DENR execs in hot water over demolished P20-M building
The government will run after outgoing top officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to make them pay P20 million for a building in its Quezon City compound that was demolished when it was supposed to be renovated only.
The Commission on Audit (COA) recently voided the 2014 contract worth P5 million for the supposed renovation of the Foreign-Assisted and Special Projects Office (FASPO) building, since the structure ended up being “totally demolished.”
In an audit observation memorandum dated March 14, 2016, state auditors assigned to the DENR told Environment Secretary Ramon Paje and other top officials to sanction those responsible for ordering the demolition without first getting approval for a new building construction, and to make them pay for the building.
The two-story FASPO building was last valued at P20.4 million in 1997. It stood adjacent to the main office building within the DENR compound along Visayas Avenue in Quezon City.
Since the demolition in early 2014, the lot where the building used to stand has become a pit of dirty stagnant water. Galvanized iron sheets were put up around the lot in an attempt to cover up the dirty pool.
Based on the audit findings, the DENR signed a memorandum of agreement on Dec. 9, 2013, with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Quezon City First Engineering District to repair and renovate the FASPO building for P5 million.
Instead of renovating, DPWH through its contractor demolished the building in January 2014.
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