A Capitol official has debunked the allegation by Commission on Audit (COA) that the calendar produced by the provincial government in 2011 was personalized.
“The calendar was never personalized. What you see in the calendar is a list of thegovernment of projects and programs that the people of Bohol had benefited of,” said Liza Quirog, SEEM cluster head, during the Kita ug ang Gobernador program Friday.
Quirogsaid she was surprised that COA had singled out the administration of Chatto when the audit agency issued a notice of disallowance on the calendars that were distributed to the Boholanos in 2011.
She said the provincial government had been printing information-packed calendars since the administrations of former governor Rene Relampagos and late governor Erico Boyles Aumentado.
“And the calendars that were printed during the time of Aumentado were no different to the calendars printed in 2011 by the Chatto administration,” Quirog said.
Quirog said it was disheartening that COA had mislabeled the calendars when in fact it had been proven that printed calendars of this kind are an effective information and education materials.
Earlier, COA had ruled with finality and affirmed its order directing Bohol Governor Edgardo Chatto and five other provincial officials to return P2.4 million spent for “personalized 2011 calendars” to the local government.
In a three-page decision dated September 27, 2017, the COA junked the petition for review of Chatto and five others due to their late filing which was delayed for nine days beyond the 180-period given to them.
“The payment of personalized 2011 calendars procured by the province, in the total amount of P2,437,000.00, is rendered final and executory,” the ruling read.
The petition stemmed from COA’s notice of disallowance for the payment of the calendars. The decision did not identify the personalities shown in the calendars.
Aside from Chatto, COA also dismissed the petition for review of former Vice Governor Concepcion Lim, provincial administrator Alfonso Damalerio II, provincial treasurer Eustaquio Socorin, provincial accountant Joseth Celocia, and requisitioning office head Gabino Redulla.
FURTHER REACTION FROM CAPITOL
In a press statement, Bohol capitol was surprised to receive information of a COA report labeling as personalized calendar the information, education, and communication (IEC) material containing the vision and programs of the province.
The set of IEC materials was released during the first term of Gov. Edgar Chatto, who just recently received from Pres. Rodrigo Duterte the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) “Most Business-Friendly Province” Award.
A separate material printed with legislative enactments and accomplishments was released by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP).
The calendar was made part of the material since it would be very useful to each household and the people would value the information which had to be known publicly, widely.
Pictures of projects, programs and activities made the material attractive and easily understood, with those showing the public officials and government workersonly incidental to the whole IEC publication.
Development communication through print medium being widely distributed is essential to where the radio or TV may not reach, Acting Provincial Administrator John Mitchel Boiser said.
Bohol succeeded in best practices of public-private participation, resulting in very active household and purok community organizing, barangay capacity development, and LGU mobilization.
The provincial government is filing a consideration to clarify issues which were not given much focus by the officials concerned, earlier thinking that the matter must have already been clarified and resolved.
In a way, constant communication with people in all medium possible effectively addresses peace and order, agriculture, health, education, environment, disaster response and many other vital concerns.
More results of engagement with the people have been evident in reduced indicators of poverty, criminality, drug affectation, and even threats of terrorism.
In its first term, the Chatto administration immediately espoused participatory governance, which precisely demanded people’s involvement in the affairs of their government.
The IEC was a part of it for it informed the constituency of Bohol’s vision, programs, projects, and activities, stressed the acting provincial administrator who is also the provincial legal officer.(with a report from GMA 7 News)