Makati auditing 19 more barangays for 'ghost' senior citizens
|Barangay||District||Population (as of May 1, 2010)|
|Forbes Park||District 1||2,533|
|La Paz||District 1||7,931|
|Pio del Pilar||District 1||27,035|
|East Rembo||District 2||26,433|
|Guadalupe Nuevo||District 2||18,271|
|Post Proper Northside||District 2||6,010|
|Post Proper Southside||District 2||45,310|
Source: National Statistics Office
“We assure our residents that we will not tolerate alleged fraudulent practices that deprive our senior citizens of the full benefits that the city government can afford to give them,” said Peña.
However, former OIC and current assistant department head of MSWD Ryan Barcelo said the findings presented before senators were based on a “flawed and questionable auditing procedure.”
Barcelo said that Cruto’s team did not conduct house-to-house interviews properly because they “simply went to the house of a senior citizen, asked if the senior citizen was there, and if told the senior citizen was not around, simply put an ‘X’ across the name of the person.”
Joey Salgado, media affairs head of the Vice President, slammed Cruto's testimony as well, calling it a “demolition through PowerPoint.”
However, Cruto defended his team, saying, “I would like to disagree [to the criticism] na hindi tama ‘yung aming proseso (I would like to disagree to the criticism that we did not follow the right process).”
Contrary to Barcelo’s claims, Cruto said task force members not only spoke to the senior citizens but they also interviewed the elderly’s relatives and neighbors to ask if the senior citizen is alive, a registered voter, and is a resident of Makati when the elderly is not present at home at the time of the house visit.
“Meron kaming mga notes na kapag wala roon [sa bahay], sinasabi nasa palengke, nasa probinsya, umalis lang, hindi namin kinoconsider 'yun as [hindi na residente ng Makati],” Cruto added.
(We have notes to prove that when we are told that the senior citizen is not at home because he or she is in the market or in the province, we didn’t immediately consider the senior citizen as no longer a resident of Makati.)
Cruto added that the ongoing audit will benefit Makati in the long run, for it will expose weaknesses in the city government’s current systems and help officials devise ways to amend them.
“Kaya nga natin ito ginagawa (This is why we were doing the audit),” he said. – Rappler.com