Masbate has P131 million in unliquidated cash advances – COA

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Masbate has P131 million in unliquidated cash advances – COA
State auditors said the total amount in 2023 is P52.43 million or 66.58 % higher compared to the balance in 2022

MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Audit (COA) has flagged the Masbate provincial government for P131.18 million in unliquidated cash advances as of December 31, 2023.

Based on the 2023 audit of Masbate released on April 29, the provincial government’s cash advances totaled P131.18 million, broken down as follows: P80.484 million for special disbursing officers (SDOs), P50.28 million for officers and employees, and P420,804 for payroll.

State auditors said the total amount is P52.43 million or 66.58 % higher compared to the P78.75 million-balance in 2022. This increase was due to additional cash advances for the provincial government’s activities, including its founding anniversary celebration, rodeo festival, and the Bagat-Dagat Festival which were not liquidated during the year.

The audit team also found that provincial government personnel were still given additional cash advances even if they had outstanding cash advances.

The audit team reminded the provincial governor of the duty to require compliance to rules governing cash advances as provide under COA Circular No. 97-002.

“The said Circular provides that it shall be the responsibility of the Head of the Agency to ensure proper granting and utilization of all CAs…that any unjustified failure by the public officer…shall constitute neglect of duty and shall be ground for administrative disciplinary action,” COA said.

The COA said that full liquidation made beyond the allowable period is considered simple neglect of duty. The first violation can cause the suspension of the erring government personnel from one to six months, while the second violation will result in dismissal.

These policies are contained in Civil Service Commission Resolution No. 040676 issued on June 17, 2004 as amended by CSC Resolution No. 1200103 dated January 12, 2012.

In response to the audit observations, the provincial government acknowledged the audit findings and assured COA that the issues raised will be addressed.

Masbate’s provincial accountant also explained that demand letters are regularly sent to personnel with unliquidated cash advances by there are those who are not aware of the documentary requirements to support the claims. –

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