resolution calling for parallel audit of Senate funds
By Office of the Senate
January 30, 2013
PASAY CITY – Senate minority
leader Alan Peter Cayetano filed a resolution (P.S. Res. No. 934)
calling for the Senate to lead by example, by authorizing the conduct
of a people’s audit or a joint or parallel audit of its budget
accounts by a private and independent auditing firm and the Commission
on Audit (COA).
This audit comes with a
mandate to examine all of the Senate’s pertinent documents, for the
purpose of increasing the level of transparency and accountability in
governance, thereby strengthening the integrity of the institution.
The senator did this in
light of the recent events that have aroused public interest and
generated a lot of reactions and issues on the utilization of public
funds thereby casting doubt upon the integrity and credibility of the
Senate as an institution.
“A people’s audit or a joint
or parallel audit that is open to the public involving a private and
independent firm and the COA addresses the growing uncertainty as
regards to the credibility and integrity of the Senate as an
institution,” he said in his resolution.
He recalled how Senate
President Juan Ponce Enrile’s distribution of P1.6 million to 18
senators and P250,000 to the remaining four including the minority
leader under the guise of additional maintenance and other operating
expenses (MOOE) funds has opened the question on whether or not such a
disbursement from the Senate President’s discretionary funds is legal.
“Among the issues sought to
be answered are: (1) How was the P250,000 released to all the Senators
reported or liquidated by the Senate President, and (2) From the P2
billion Senate budget for 2012, how much was liquidated by
certification alone,” he said.
The minority leader
explained that in line with the current administration’s thrust of
transparency, accountability and good governance reform in its “daang matuwid”, the public’s right to know how their taxes are utilized must
“The Senate’s response must
not be limited to its passage on third reading of SB 3208 or the
Freedom of Information (FOI) Bill but rather through concrete action,”
Cayetano also reiterated his
argument that there is no legal impediment in allowing the joint or
parallel audit by the people and/or a private auditing firm with the
He concluded that given that
the Senate is among the most credible government institutions, it is
not only mandated to deliberate on and pass appropriate laws, conduct
investigations in aid of legislation, act as impartial judges in
impeachment proceedings of corrupt public officials but also to live
by example as being trustworthy and accountable to the people, serving
them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and efficiency.
“The Senate could not now
claim to credibly investigate other offices and individuals when it is
perceived to be less transparent and accountable within its ranks with
regard to how it allocates, disburses and liquidates its MOOE and
other funds,” he said.