Commission on Audit

COA sides with Iloilo fishermen on P600,000 claim vs LGU
COA sides with Iloilo fishermen on P600,000 claim vs LGU


The Ajuy municipal government is told to provide compensation to two fishermen whose impounded boats were neglected

MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Audit (COA) sided with two fishermen from Iloilo province, affirming their claims for damages against a local government unit (LGU) over their impounded fishing boats.

The COA commission proper said Erwin Estil and Rommel Diadio are entitled to P255,000 each, plus interest, after the Ajuy LGU left their motorized bancas unattended, causing the boats to lose their value over the years. Estil owned M/BCA Angelica 1 while Diadio had M/BCA RJDI.

Estil and Diadio, who were first apprehended in relation to alleged illegal fishing, sued and won an initial case before the Victorias City Trial Court in April 2016. But incumbent officials refused to pay as the incident happened during the past administration.

COA, however, said there is “no contest that the fishing boat was actually seized from the possession of the owner,” leading to loss of income.

It added that the Ajuy municipal government is required to pay the fishermen in full but can ask former officials, who were named as respondents in the original case, for reimbursement.  

The total compensation for each fisherman, as approved by COA, includes P150,000 based on value of the fishing boat, P30,000 for lost income, P20,000 for lawyer’s fee, P15,000 for legal expenses, P30,000 for moral damages, and P10,000 for exemplary damages.

The total is subject to annual interest of 6% since March 2018, or 60 days after the claims were filed with the commission. –

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