COA flags PTV’s unauthorized incentives, failure to charge suppliers for delays
Besides the controversy surrounding its tourism advertisement, the state-run People’s Television has also been called out by the Commission on Audit over its grant of unauthorized employee incentives and its failure to take suppliers to task over delays.
In its 2017 annual audit report posted on its website, COA said the People’s Television Network, Inc. (PTNI) released P10.456 million in employee incentives in December 2017, “without the approval of the Office of the President” as required under Section 5 of Presidential Decree No. 1597.
Auditors said PTNI should “stop granting allowances, incentives and benefits without the prior approval from the Office of the President.”
To avoid being required to refund the irregularly-granted benefits, auditors asked PTNI to obtain the required approval and submit a copy of the OP’s authorization.
SEA Games incentives, economic aid
The amount consisted of P4.458 million in “Southeast Asian Games incentives” released on Dec. 14 and P5.999 million in economic relief assistance on Dec. 15.
More than half of the amount went to contract of service personnel, who received P2.858 million in SEAG incentives and P3.995 million of the economic assistance.
COA said the payments were only authorized under two board resolutions approved by the PTNI board of directors on Dec. 13.
Although General Manager Dino Apolonio approved some of the payrolls and disbursement vouchers, they were not signed by the finance division’s officer-in-charge to attest to the documents’ completeness.
State auditors also faulted PTNI for failing to impose P67.179 million in liquidated damages on various suppliers that did not deliver the procured goods on time.
“The accumulated liquidated damages on the late deliveries of two suppliers have already reached 10 percent of the amount of their contracts, but PTNI did not rescind their contracts nor take other courses of action to collect the liquidated damages due from them,” read the report.
This was contrary to Section 68 of the revised implementing rules and regulations of the Government Procurement Reform Act, COA said.
It asked the PTNI management to “strictly comply” with the rule on the imposition of liquidated damages, and rescind contracts where the damages have already exceeded 10 percent of the contract.
Cash advances for Asean coverage
Another issue concerned the P1.085 million in shortages incurred by an unnamed special disbursing officer, who was granted various cash advances for the purposes of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Ministers Meeting and the Grand Commemorative Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Asean.
Although P2.346 million in cash advances were released for the network’s news coverage, auditors could only account for P1.261 million in cash items.
Auditors recommended that the officer be require to immediately restitute the cash shortage and that appropriate charges be filed against the officer.
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