For the fourth time, Lapu dads defer approval of SB no. 3

By: Futch Anthony Inso - CDN Digital Correspondent | September 09,2021 - 08:56 PM
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COVID-19 related expenses that were not fully liquidated have been cited as one of the reasons why the Lapu-Lapu City Council deferred for the fourth time the approval of Supplemental Budget No. 3.

LAPU-LAPU CITY, Philippines — The supplemental budget (SB) no. 3 has been deferred for the fourth time by the Lapu-Lapu City Council after it failed to pass the special session on Wednesday, September 8, 2021.

Although the annual plan of SB no. 3 was passed on September 2, it was scrutinized again by opposition councilors after some items in the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related expenses liquidation, were questioned.

Councilor Michael Dignos said that for this year, the city has already appropriated P120,313,157 for COVID-19 related expenses.

Of the said amount, only P91,054,303 was liquidated by the City Accountant, with P29,258,854 from the principal amount still to be liquidated.

“Mao na ba akong gipangutana, sa inyong liquidation naa paman diay ta’y P29 million nganong naa naman ta’y supplemental budget no.3. So, ilang giingon nga wala pa daw na-account ang tanan sa July ug August,” Dignos said.

The councilor also questioned the inclusion of some items in the liquidation.

“Mag-doubt ka kay like sa gi-example ni Councilor Rico (Amores), kadtong 136 kabuok laptop, murag dili mani 136, clerical error pa. Gi-certify man gud niya. Nanghatag pod ug 240 sacks of rice didto sa patients nga naa sa home quarantine. Unya among gipangita sa voucher kay ang usa ka sack sa rice mahug man siya ug tag P2,600. So unsa ni siya nga rice? Kay atong tan-awon nganong daghan-daghan atong nahatagan ani nga rice pero mahal-mahal mani siya,” he added.

Councilor Amores also said that of the P91 million liquidated COVID-19 related expenses, around 68% or P61,849,864 were spent for the purchase of food packs alone.

He added that the public has the right to know where such amounts were spent especially since it was taxpayers’ money.

“As much as we want to approve the earliest possible time the SB 3, but we have to reconcile the documents because that’s the money of the taxpayers. We would like to inform Oponganons that we are in a hurry for the approval of SB 3, especially the COVID-related expenses and the burial expenses also,” Amores said.

The two councilors said that the executive department should also present supporting documents for their liquidation.

Aside from this, they also questioned the disbursement of burial assistance from the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) after they noticed that the amount released was not in uniform.

Amores said that some beneficiaries have only received P2,000, while some got P19,000.

Earlier, Annabeth Cuizon, head of CSWDO, said that beneficiaries of the burial assistance will receive P8,000.

Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard “Ahong” Chan on Monday, has questioned the continued delay in the approval of SB 3.

“Mao na nga naglibog kaayo ko sa atong mga konsehales sa atoang dakbayan, sa mayoriya sa mga konsehal, kay ang panginahanglanon sa mga katawhan, mao na hinoon ang ilang gilangay-langay,” Chan said.

Dignos and Amores were both allies of the Radazas, Chan’s political rivals.    /rcg

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TAGS: COVID-19, COVID-19 expenses, food packs, laptops, Lapu-Lapu City, Lapu-Lapu City Council, rice, SB no. 3, special session

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