Only P4M of P6M to reach city villages

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014


TWELVE barangays forfeited their chance to receive the P4-million financial assistance from the Cebu City Government.

The assistance was for 2013 yet, but most of the 80 barangays in Cebu City failed to liquidate previous assistance from 2011 and 2012, so the P6.6 million appropriation was not released.

Only Barangays Lahug, Basak San Nicolas, Mabini and Punta Princesa were able receive the cash assistance under the maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) at the complete amount of P6.6 million.

As a result, the account closed.

Lawyer Jose Daluz III said he met with the local finance committee. He pushed for P4 million to be extended to the rest of the 76 barangays, this year.

Unfortunately, there was documentation that 12 barangays were not able to accomplish the obligation request, which was essential the appropriation to be earmarked.

The northern barangays who were not in the list eligible to avail of the assistance are: Banilad, Carreta, Cogon Ramos, Kalubihan, Mabolo, Pari-an, Santo Niño and Talamban.

In the south, the barangays are: Buhisan, Guadalupe, Labangon and San Nicolas Proper.

Mabolo Barangay Captain Rey Ompoc noticed that most of the barangays that forfeit are allies of Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK).

Daluz denied politics played a hand on the forfeit of 12 barangays.

“Our own barangay captains failed to comply, only four liquidated their previous financial assistance,” said Daluz.

But he haggled with the local finance committee to obligate at least half of the original amount to be released and the committee relented to P4 million for each barangay.

Accommodation

“We informed immediately the barangays. If you see, there are only (12) that did not process the obligation request. This is an accommodation by the mayor to all barangays. Accounting informed us of the status of the 12 barangays but I said, ‘we wait for them,’” said Daluz.

Ompoc said his personnel immediately processed the program of works and estimates for the 2013 financial assistance, which will be used for the renovation of the barangay’s sports complex.

“Wala man silay klaro kung kinsay papirmahon, gi-pasapasa mi. Wala mi kasabot. Sige pa gyud og ilis og engineer (The City is not clear on who should sign the POWE, we were passed from one person to another. We couldn’t understand. And they kept changing the engineer),” Ompoc told Sun.Star Cebu alluding to Rama’s revamp where Atty. Jose Marie Poblete was designated as city engineer, replacing Engr. Kenneth Carmelita Enriquez, who was designated as city planning and development coordinator.

Barangays Guadalupe and Santo Niño claimed they were informed too late of the processing of obligation request, so that they could no longer beat the deadline.

The deadline imposed was last Monday.

The obligation request is needed because an MOOE account closes at the end of the year, which would mean that the appropriation could not be carried over to the following year.

A capital outlay, on the other hand, can be a continuing appropriation.

The appropriation was labeled as MOOE so that each barangay will have the prerogative what project it will implement.

“We will give them another time to liquidate so they can get the P4 million,” said Daluz.

Santo Niño Barangay Secretary Brian Gaviola said the barangay officials have decided to forgo the 2013 assistance and concentrate on the 2012 assistance, which the barangay has yet to claim.

“The condition in the 2013 budget ordinance, as approved by the council, is that the barangay must have liquidated previous financial assistance from 2012 and below,” explained Daluz.

His office and that of Executive Assistant IV Eduardo Rama Jr. have offered assistance in the liquidation of financial assistance from previous years.

Barangay Kalubihan Barangay Captain Carmelo Millan didn’t realize that his barangay forfeited the 2013 financial assistance.

“Kung naa maayo, kung wala okay raman sad ko (If there is assistance then good, if not then I’m okay),” he told Sun.Star Cebu.

“My constituents will just have to be satisfied with my service,” said Millan.

His barangay still has P500,000 to be spent on projects from the previous financial assistance.

In Barangay Guadalupe, barangay secretary Consuelo Go said the barangay officials immediately passed a resolution during the first session of the year last Jan. 8.

The resolution sought for the utilization of the P6.6 million financial assistance.

The bulk of this, about P4 million, will be used to purchase garbage trucks. The P2.6 million will be for other infrastructure projects.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 05, 2014.

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