COA Commissioner Fabia on role of audit in governance

Published: 14 March 2019

Commission on Audit (COA) Commissioner Jose A. Fabia emphasized the role of audit in governance at the Philippine Council of Deans and Educators in Business (PCDEB)’s 118th Founding Anniversary held at the AG New World Manila Bay Hotel on 22 February 2019. PCDEB’s anniversary theme was "Bringing Business Education in a Transformative Era."

Commissioner Fabia said audit ensures accountability which plays a major role in governance.

"For you to be accountable, there is always a system of accountability that is inside your own institutions which you submit every year to the Securities and Exchange Commission. If you're in government, on the other hand, you are also accountable and your accountability is measured and examined by the Commission on Audit," Commissioner Fabia pointed out.

Commissioner Fabia detailed the role of COA in the audit of government funds, explaining the various audits COA performs and the quasi-legislative and quasi-judicial powers of COA to make sure that there is accountability in the government. He also described the role of the Commission Proper in promulgating rules and regulations for accounting and auditing that is in accordance with international standards and said that COA has to determine the checks and balances within the organization to make sure that there is good governance existing in all government agencies. "We have to make sure that all officials in government who hold money and make decisions about money are accountable for the money that they spent," Commissioner Fabia added.

Commissioner Fabia also shared to the more than 110 attendees his preferred five skill sets or competencies needed in determining the readiness of an organization. These are: planning, budgeting, procurement, managing logistics, and adequacy of funds. He underscored the importance of performance audit by explaining that this should not to be confused as a medium to find fault in an organization, but to be a partner with the government in making sure that the country’s coffer is properly utilized and make sure that the government functions smoothly.

He also explained how leveraging technology can greatly aid not only the government but also the education and private sectors to ease the work load. Commissioner Fabia revealed that COA is working with the Department of Foreign Affairs in instituting an e-payment system that will allow OFWs to receive credit cards, debit cards, and even postal money orders, manager's checks, and cash. This will include e-receipts that are prepared by machines and automatically go into the system so that in real time, people will know the actual collections of government. COA is also planning on implementing an e-procurement system so that in real time, people will know how much money goes into the government and how much of these are spent.

Commissioner Fabia also encouraged the attendees to be one in building the country for the good of the Filipino people.

The PCDEB is responsible in organizing regional associations and sponsoring fora, seminars, and conventions in Manila and in different regions for the professional growth of members and business students. It strives to strengthen its linkages with industry as manifested by the recent formal commitment of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry in bridging the gap between education and employment and attain inclusive growth for the country.#