Capitol fails to pay contractors

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Sunday, January 12, 2014


TWO provincial hospitals have yet to start normal operations after the Cebu Provincial Capitol failed to pay the contractors because of contracts that did not pass through the Provincial Board.

The construction of the Danao Provincial Hospital was not finished while the Balamban Provincial Hospital was padlocked after it was not turned over to the Capitol.

Provincial Board (PB) Member Grecilda Sanchez-Zaballero, chair of the committee on budget and appropriations, said Capitol doesn’t have enough funds to pay all of the Province’s debts to the contractors.

The Capitol has paid 31 contractors P607.239 million as of the end of 2013. Out of this amount, P250 million is due and demandable.

However, only P88 million of the P250 million have obligation requests. This means documents needed for the payment of the contractor were already acquired.

But the payments cannot yet be given since their contracts have yet to be ratified by the PB.

Some of these projects were started during the administration of former governor now Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia (Cebu, third district).

Problem

Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III met with the PB to discuss the problem.

In an interview, Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale said their main concerns are the two provincial hospitals.

“Our inquiry is on the hospitals. How do we proceed? If we will not pay the contractors, how can we use the hospital? The two hospitals involved are the one in Danao, which is now upgraded to a provincial hospital, and the one in Balamban,” Magpale said.

Magpale said the contractor of the Danao Provincial Hospital already stopped their work.

Magpale said she knew that construction of half of the building of the hospital is not yet done.

The Balamban Provincial Hospital, which is located in Barangay Baliwagan, Balamban, has been padlocked, said Zaballero.

Last Friday, Zaballero went to the area to check the condition of the hospital.

“The Balamban Provincial Hospital is like a ghost town,” she said.

She said the building was not turned over to the Capitol after the contractor did not receive payment.

The contractor for the Danao Provincial Hospital is Supreme ABF Construction while that of Balamban Provincial Hospital is WTG Construction and Development Corp.Zaballero and members of her committee will set policies on the review of the contracts.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 12, 2014.

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