Commission on Audit (COA) top executives led by Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and Commissioners Heidi L. Mendoza and Jose A. Fabia with PFMP Team Leader and Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Counsellor Daniel Featherston and Department of Budget and Management Undersecretary Richard E. Moya shortly after the Brown Bag Session hosted by the COA.

Quezon City – The Philippines is gaining considerable ground in improving its public financial management system through programs that allow the government timely and accurate reporting of actual budget spending, accounting and auditing rules that adhere to international standards, and a broader and deeper citizen engagement in the budget process.

These reforms highlighted the Brown Bag Session on Public Financial Management (PFM) hosted by the Commission on Audit (COA) in coordination with the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and the Philippines-Australia Public Financial Management Program (PFMP) held at the COA Professional and Institutional Development Sector Auditorium on June 16, 2015.

  

Chairperson Aguinaldo welcomes participants to the PFM Brown Bag Session on Public Financial Management.

 

The event updated 100 COA top executives led by COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and Commissioners Heidi L. Mendoza and Jose A. Fabia, as well as auditors and support staff on the progress achieved by the PFM Reform Program which aims to improve efficiency, accountability and transparency in public fund use in order to ensure the direct, immediate, substantial and economic delivery of public services. 

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Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo, Commissioners Heidi L. Mendoza and Jose A. Fabia with the members of the Commission on Appointments (CA) after the CA approved Chairperson Aguinaldo’s ad-interim appointment.

The Commission on Appointments (CA) approved the ad-interim appointment of Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo on June 10, 2015. Chairperson Aguinaldo breezed through the confirmation process during the 2nd Regular Session of the 16th Congress.

In his sponsorship speech, CA Committee on Constitutional Commissions and Offices Chair Senator Teofisto Guingona III said Chairperson Aguinaldo “has the qualities of competence, fitness and integrity.” Senator Guingona listed the accomplishments of Chairperson Aguinaldo who joined the government service in 2011.

Earlier, Senator Guingona seemed pleased with the very straightforward answers of Chairperson Aguinaldo during the Committee panel hearing on June 9, 2015. Chairperson Aguinaldo said that he believes that there should be a uniform set of guidelines for auditors to follow when asked by Senator Guingona on the different interpretation of auditors on the provisions of Presidential Decree 1445. 

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COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo with Commissioners Heidi L. Mendoza and Jose A. Fabia and Director Lito Q. Martin during COA’s presentation of its bid to renew its mandate as External Auditor of the World Health Organization.

From March to May, the Commission on Audit scored two wins in auditing international agencies. Last March, we beat the United Kingdom and France in the post of External Auditor of the International Labour Organization, even if we submitted the highest bid and without launching a campaign. Just two months passed and again, we won as External Auditor of the World Health Organization after three rounds of secret balloting. While we were literally jumping for joy, we realized that it is the first month anniversary of our beloved Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo. What a welcome surprise! This calls for an M2M as in Merry Making … 

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The Commission on Audit (COA) celebrated its 116th founding anniversary on May 8, 2015 focusing on honest and sincere public service as its answer to the challenges of the modern times.

The week-long celebration was highlighted by the COA Salutes the Best program honoring the most outstanding audit performance and exemplary COA employees held at the COA Sports and Cultural Complex on May 7, 2015.

“In my years of working in government, I have witnessed and experienced public service as a truly unique and always a challenging task. Our working environment is like the aquarium – transparent, with every outside looker scrutinizing our moves and thinking, having private expectations. This is always the challenge to us to be extraordinary,” observed COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo.

Referring to the honor awardees, Chairman Aguinaldo expressed the hope that their examples will inspire fellow COAns to achieve and be better at what they do. “Let us not ignore the reality that the making of a cathedral begins with the first and single cut of a stone. You and I, together, are the builders,” he added.

The Gawad Kahusayan for outstanding audit performance went to the Philippine Army Headquarters Audit Team who discovered anomalous registration of 567 military trucks involving an initial amount of more than 9 million pesos, and the registration of 484 motor vehicles in the name of private persons, military personnel and private entities at a cost amounting to P95.58 million.

The Gawad Kagitingan for “performance of a courageous and selfless act involving the risking of one’s life and safety for the common good and/or benefit of others which may be work related or related to public service’’ was awarded to Auditor Lourdes N. Algopera of COA Regional Office VII.

The Gawad Karangalan for “performance of extraordinary act or public service and consistent demonstration of exemplary ethical behavior on the basis of observance of one or more of the eight norms of behavior under R.A. No. 6713” awardees were Auditors Shiela Marie N. Kitongan of the COA-Cordillera Administrative Region, Eufemia C. Jaugan of the National Government Sector (NGS) and Mayola P. Salita of the Corporate Government Sector (CGS).

Former State Auditor Lucia P. Sotelo, who is the national treasurer of the Philippine Maize Federation, Inc. which was created to help farmers and protect their interest, was awarded the Most Productive Retiree.

Receiving the loyalty milestone were Auditors Ramon C. Pentinio of CGS Cluster 2, Evelyn B. Mercado of NGS Cluster 1, Librada C. Pascual of CGS Cluster 5, Myrna D. Monzon of NGS Cluster 2 and Maria L. Adiong of the Fraud Audit Office. The loyalty milestone regional awardees were Domingo S. Vicente of Region I, Eveyln N. Valerio of Region III, Araceli A. Papa of Region IV-A, Arnaldo G. Gando of Region IV-A, Nena Marcela Demasu-ay of Region VII, Noe D. dela Pena of Region VII, Virginia A. Caraso of Region XII, Apolonia B. Jalon of Region XII, Othelia A. Aujero of Region XII, Repsima B. Macachor of Region XIII, Normallah N. Guro of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and Nader M. Macagaan of ARMM. 

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COA Commissioner and Officer-in-Charge Heidi L. Mendoza (center) with (from left) Finance Officer Mr. Tomas A. Valerio of the Philippine Permanent Mission to the United Nations and other International Organizations, COA Director Michael L. Racelis, Director Visitacion Q. Mendoza, Ms. Jennifer Andrea S. Imperial of the Office of Commissioner Mendoza, Director Lito Q. Martin and Labor Attache Ma. Celeste M. Valderrama shortly after Commissioner Mendoza’s presentation of COA’s bid as ILO External Auditor on March 14, 2015.

Geneva, Switzerland- The International Labour Organization (ILO), a specialized agency of the United Nations, appointed the Philippine Commission on Audit (COA) as its External Auditor for a period of four years beginning on April 1, 2016.

 

The ILO’s Governing Body made the appointment following the unanimous recommendation of the Selection Panel during the ILO’s on-going 323rd Session being held in Geneva, Switzerland from March 12-27, 2015. The Philippines was selected over other shortlisted candidates, France and the United Kingdom.

 

 The Selection Panel, a tripartite body composed of Ghana, China, the United States of America and Greece representing Governments, South Africa and Japan representing the Employers group, and Belgium and Denmark representing the Workers group, considered the high level of professionalism and technical qualities as well as non-technical aspects such as diversity in audit base and approach to client relations.

 

“This appointment is an affirmation not only of COA’s audit expertise but also its integrity and independence. We assure the ILO of our promise to deliver quality external audit to the highest professional standards and to work together with the ILO in its pursuit of its mandate,” said COA Commissioner and Officer-in-Charge Heidi L. Mendoza.

 

Consul Arnel Talisayon, representing the Philippine Permanent Mission to the United Nations and other International Organizations in Geneva, for his part, appreciated “the objective, holistic, and systematic procedure of evaluating the proposal of each of the candidates which reflects on the high level integrity and professionalism of the ILO.”

 

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