Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo discussed the constitutional mandate of the Commission at the Tax Management Association of the Philippines, Inc. (TMAP) General Membership Meeting held on 27 September 2021 through virtual conferencing.

TMAP is a non-stock corporation established to professionalize tax practice and provide a channel for the private sector to participate in drafting of tax laws, rules and regulations. TMAP works as a partner of government in complying with tax laws and in helping bring much needed collections.

Chairperson Aguinaldo discussed the history of the COA, its major functions, the types of audits that COA conducts, the constitutional mandate and duties of COA, and myths and misconceptions about the Commission.

“We have to gear our auditors to remember that we are really in a unique situation and this is the first time we experienced this kind of a pandemic. When we issued the guidelines in the audit of COVID-19 related expenditures, I reminded auditors to exercise some discretions based on their analysis. Accountability is important but we must not be a hindrance to getting the actual work done,” said Chairperson Aguinaldo.

An open forum was held where participants raised questions on issues such as the effects of the declaration of the national state of calamity to the role of COA, possible repercussions to an agency or persons involved if COA finds anomalous transactions, the President’s request for COA to audit the Philippine Red Cross and a law proposing pre-audit.

“As taxpayers, we want to make sure that our taxes are spent judiciously. COA has a big role in monitoring public spending,” said TMAP President Atty. Priscilla B. Valer.

Atty. Valer presented Chairperson Aguinaldo with a certificate of appreciation. Also in attendance was former COA Chairperson Ma. Gracia M. Pulido Tan who introduced Chairperson Aguinaldo as the guest speaker.