Agri office to impose stricter measures in accrediting NGOs-A A +A
Saturday, September 7, 2013
AGRICULTURE Secretary Proceso Alcala said the Department of Agriculture (DA)
will impose more stringent procedures when accrediting non-governmental and people’s organizations (NGOs/POs), in the light of the alleged misuse of Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of legislators.
He said it is unfortunate that one NGO previously accredited by DA was found to be non-existent, and identified with businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, alleged mastermind of the “pork barrel scam.”
He said it was only in August 2012, upon the request of legislators, that the DA has started receiving and processing PDAF agri-fishery projects. It formed a special committee and put in place a system to accredit NGOs and POs that will implement PDAF projects. Secondly, it released funds in tranches, of up to four installments, based on liquidation and progress implementation of projects.
While safety nets were in place, he said the DA had no prior knowledge of the “modus operandi” of Napoles, and that one of her ghost NGOs (Kaupdanan Para sa Mangunguma Foundation Inc. or KPMFI) was used as a conduit by several legislators. The KPMFI was accredited by the DA in September 2012, and even secured a certification of good standing from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
During the media briefing, he said six members of the House of Representatives made KPMFI as their PDAF project implementers, allocating a total of P83.2 million, of which 54 percent or P44.9 million were already released for their respective projects.
Of the six, only Representative Arnulfo Fuentebella denied that he endorsed a project to be implemented by KPMFI.
Secretary Alcala said the DA is coordinating the Office of the Solicitor General in filing an appropriate case against KPMFI.
The DA chief said other legislators also used six other foundations as implementers of their respective PDAF projects, namely: Maharlikang Lipi, Kaakbay Buhay, Coprahan at Gulayan, Gabay at Pag-asa ng Masa, Kasangga sa Masaganang Bukas, and Kabuhayan at Kalusugan Alay sa Masa. (PR)
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 07, 2013.