MANILA: Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Grace Pullido Tan yesterday denied clearing from anomalies the alleged overpriced Makati City Hall parking building.
“We didn’t give any clearance and we are also not giving... There is no such thing,” Tan told Senator Aquilino Pimentel III, head of the Blue Ribbon sub-committee investigating the controversial building. “The commission does not issue clearances of the nature or the tenor that was described,” she added.
Earlier in the Senate hearing, Makati Jejomar “Junjun” Binay presented a report by COA technical audit specialists founding no irregularity in the contract of the building.
Tan, however, said the document that Binay was pertaining to was actually just a memorandum submitted by the Makati COA auditor to the immediate superior.
“So it is an internal communication and I don’t know how the city of Makati got a copy of it,” Tan said.
She said the document is still being validated by the COA central office through a special audit.
“At this stage, this is just a report and it is being subjected to evaluation along with all the other pertinent papers and documents,” Tan said. “There is still a lot to be done.”
Binay, his father, Vice President Jejomar Binay, and several others are facing a plunder complaint filed by Atty Renato Bondal who claimed that the Makati City Hall II parking building was overpriced by up to 300 percent.
During the Senate hearing, Bondal also criticised the Binays for splitting the contracts or dividing into several phases the construction of their major infrastructure projects. Tan said problems may arise from such practice. “In the usual course, it’s a red flag,” she told senators.
THE PHILIPPINE STAR