COA recommends probe into misuse of CARP funds in C. Visayas
The Commission on Audit (COA) has recommended the criminal investigation of officials of the Department of Agrarian Reform’s Central Visayas office for unlawfully charging P14.18 million in employee benefits against the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program’s trust fund.
In a six-page decision, the COA affirmed the disallowance of the collective negotiation agreement incentives, performance bonus incentives and medical allowances, which were charged against the Agrarian Reform Fund, also known as Fund 158.
The COA said the payment of employee allowances and incentives using the Special fund is not allowed under Section 20 of Executive Order No. 229.
It noted that CARP is meant to advance the welfare of landless farmers and farm workers to promote social justice.
“While CARP is being implemented by the DAR, the use of CARP funds Fund 158 for the grant of [the incentives] to DAR officials and employees is not among the purposes and intents of the fund,” the decision read. “Thus, the payment of the said benefits has no legal basis.”
Because of the violation of the rules governing the CARP fund, the COA directed its Prosecution and Litigation Office to forward the case to the Office of the Ombudsman for the investigation and possible indictment of the “persons liable for the transaction.”/rga
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