PORAC councilor Mike Tapang’s lamentations on the lack of transparency and violations of disbursement cited by none other than the Commission on Audit (COA) on the disbursement of public funds of the municipal government of his town are no non-sense.

During the recent session of the town’s Sangguniang Bayan, Tapang, who is also the President of the Philippine Councilor’s League (PCL) Pampanga Chapter, he has “challenged” Mayor Condralito Dela Cruz to implement a “full disclosure policy” concerning programs, projects of the municipality that involves the disbursement of Porac government’s finances.

While Tapang’s intention is for the municipality to have transparency in the municipal government’s spending of public funds, it seems that he needs some explanation from the Mayor based on the statements of the people of Porac that were posted in social networking site, Facebook.

In the said site, it was alleged that Mayor Dela Cruz has distributed P1 million from the municipal government’s financial coffers to the town’s barangay captains even without the knowledge and approval of the Sangguniang Bayan.

The law requires the approval of town’s council on the disbursement of public funds.

Tapang added that the Sangguniang Bayan singly has a list of general titles of appropriations from the 2014 non-office budget under the executive department such as the 20 percent local development fund amounting to P33.2 million, donations and grants amounting to P13 million, P11.5 million for calamity fund, P10.9 million for maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) among others.

He likewise stressed that the COA has found several violations and irregularities on the disbursement and use of Porac’s 2011 and 2012 budgets.

Further, he noted that the municipality has paid teachers in 2011 but in fact the same were “non-existent”. He likewise reported P49 million worth of equipment which COA said was unverifiable due to lack of physical count.

In his speech, he called on the local chief executive to lead the municipality with utmost dedication and honesty under the culture of integrity and accountability in Porac.

Another councilor meanwhile said that he does not believe that Mayor Dela Cruz can do such. He opined that the chief executive cannot steal from the public coffers. He quipped that there are available documents for the alleged irregular disbursements.

While it was this councilor’s opinion that seems to come in defense of Mayor Dela Cruz, Tapang is questioned by their constituencies on the apparent disbursement irregularities in the said municipality. He too cannot answer for such, the reason why he calls for full public disclosure on municipal programs and projects that involves the disbursement of public funds.

Tapang talks sense. He merely seeks for transparency that he alleges to be in existing in their municipal government.

While he is being pushed to become the next mayor of Porac, there is nothing wrong for his call for a transparent government accountable to Poraqueños if he sees the otherwise.

This early, he wants changes and reforms at the municipality he serves. He wants honest and dedicated service to the people they took an oath to serve. As such, he wants to cleanse the things he sees dirty at their yard.

Aside from Tapang, "Dedikasyon sa Tungkulin" and "Katapatan" are needed by Porac town.


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