AT the Mactan Cebu International Airport, Manager Danilo Francia loosed probers who’ll finger whistleblower(s). He wants to know who leaked to the press information on the half-a-million-bucks severance pay for board member Patria Aurora Roa.

Below is unpublished information on the Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA).

Francia need not create “Whistleblower 2.” We’ll give him the name of the source. She is Maria Irma Purog, state auditor IV. Data that Ms Purog gives is spelt out in the latest Commission on Audit (COA) report on MCIAA. Excerpts:

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Only 63 out of 767 parcels of land owned by the airport are covered by titles. “We were not able to satisfy ourselves as to the Authority’s ownership over the remaining 704 parcels.” Except for 30 lots, the rest are assessed on 1994 values. “Land should be recorded at cost or its fair value.”

Two contracts for reconstitution of original certificates of land titles worth P14.6 million were authorized. “Irregular expenses were incurred.” This was a negotiated contract, not open bidding to other qualified workers.

Release of full payment of P3 million was made despite lack of DENR approval—-“the most important item for reconstitution” in court. COA could not ascertain reasonableness of contract price.

MCIAA did not comply with COA’s notice of suspension. It’s threat to disallow payments were shrugged off with a curt: “A notice of disallowance is not in order.”

“Fringe benefits, without legal basis, and ‘discretionary/intelligence expenses without supporting documents’ were continuously granted.” In calendar year 2009, anniversary bonuses crested at P19.9 million.

This isn’t the first dip into the airport cookie jar. In 2007, COA warned the grants were illegal. In 2008, MCIAA ran up a bill of P19.1 million. But the Department of Budget and Management spiked P13.7 million of that.

The airport board of directors burned P1.1 million in unsupported discretionary expenses. Another P1.2 million went for intelligence expenses, again without following established rules for such funds.

“All MCIAA officials, including members of the board, should refund the amounts,” COA said. No further grants should be made until the court’s decision on MCIAA’s petition for “declaratory relief” is handed down.

To operate MCIAA, it drew up a budget of P1.22 billion. COA balked since the budget had not been approved by the budget department. But MCIAA insisted: Its charter does not require DBM approval.

Unresolved deadlocks spawn confusion. The airport incurred an overdraft of P58.6 million. No such thing, the airport says. “It was agreed that this matter be elevated to the Department of Budget and Management so that the issue can be settled once and for all.”

Recall travel tax clipped whenever you fly. That topped a nifty P536.9 million last year. The airport excludes that from its income tax return. If BIR disagrees, “this will have a negative impact on cash resources of the Authority.”

Payables and unliquidated obligations added up to P77.4 million. The validity, reliability and existence of (such claims)…is doubtful…A review of 2009 unliquidated obligations found that 86 percent of P67.2 million recorded obligations were not properly approved….”

“These liabilities were recorded even if there was no receipt of goods or services and/or there was no authority for their incurrence.”

There’s more in this official whistleblower’s report. But Sidebar has a cap of 2,800 characters without space. And this column is now 2,985-–an overdraft like MCIAA.