Thursday, January 27, 2022

Tarlac guv hires useless consultants

Oct 4, 2015 @ 9:41

The Tarlac provincial government wasted P10.3 million in consultants who have no technical or professional experience or whose services may be done by regular employees.

In a 2014 report by the Commission on Audit (COA) on the province, state auditors hit Governor Victor Yap, Vice Governor Enrique Cojuangco Jr. and the Sangguiang Panlalawigan for entering into various six-month contracts with consultants who get paid P8,000 to P24,000 monthly.

The government spent P10.312 million for consultancy services in 2014 – P937,419.32 for Governor Yap, P1.575 million for Vice Governor Cojuangco, and P7.799 million for the Sanggunian.

The audit agency said the consultants did not have the expertise in terms of educational attainment, trainings and eligibilities.

Of the 53 consultants, only two hold post-graduate degrees, while 47 are only degree holders, and one undergraduate.

Also, 29 consultants have not attended the necessary trainings.

Moreover, of the 53 consultants, only five were passers of Civil Service Exam, seven of any Board Licensure exams, while a whopping 41 did not pass any eligibility examinations.

“Clearly, the above attributes and qualifications were not observed in the recent dealings of the province. We believe that the level of expertise requires absolute technical competence in terms of education/eligibility, experience and trainings which the provincial government of Tarlac failed to consider in the procurement of consultancy,” the COA said in its report.

The audit agency also said the services of the consultants duplicate the functions of regular plantilla employees.

Among the services of the consultants which may be performed by regular employees include research on legislation, assistance to meetings and inspections, preparation of schedules, documentation and maintenance of data, and preparation of monthly reports.

The COA also said the requirements of the Offices of the Governor, Vice Governor and Sangguniang Panlalawigan do not require technical expertise, and thus there is no need to hire consultants whose services may be rendered by regular employees.

The audit agency said the provincial government expense of millions for consultants is a waste of taxpayers’ money.

“We believe the hired consultants have no technical or professional expertise to meet the services needed by the province. Hence, the consultants’ services can be dispensed with. As such, the expenses incurred for payment of their services are considered ‘unnecessary expenditures,” the COA said.

“Incurrence or payment of unnecessary expenditures is a wastage of public funds,” it added.

In its reply to the COA, the Tarlac provincial government said it hired consultants for services which are confidential in nature, thus requiring the trust and confidence of Governor Yap.

State auditors recommended to terminate the contracts of consultants whose services only duplicate those or can be performed by regular employees. They also recommended to only hire consultants who have the expertise in their respective fields and select these in a public bidding.

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