Gov't spent double on confidential, intel funds in 2017 from 2016

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 29 2018 03:34 PM | Updated as of Oct 29 2018 06:48 PM

MANILA - The confidential and intelligence funds of the national government shot up by 101.78% from P4.44 billion in 2016 to P8.98 billion in 2017, state auditors said.

In the 2017 Annual Financial Report of the Commission on Audit, a total of P8,967,373 was spent on “Confidential, Intelligence and Extraordinary and Miscellaneous Expenses.”

The Confidential, Intelligence and Extraordinary Expenses are part of the Total Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses worth P302.21 billion.

“Confidential, intelligence and extraordinary expenses totaling P8.98 billion represented 2.97 percent of the total MOOE. This group of accounts posted an increase of P4.52 billion or 101.78 percent from previous year of P4.44 billion,” the COA said.

Three agencies spent the funds in billions of pesos: namely the Office of the President, P2.515 billion; the Department of National Defense, 2.222 billion; and Congress, P1.797.

Other agencies listed in the CIEE are the Department of the Interior and Local Government, other executive offices, Department of Justice, the Judiciary, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, Department of Finance, Department of Education and other departments and offices.

Top 5 major components of MOOE are Supplies and Materials Expenses worth P69.67 billion, Other Maintenance and Operating Expenses worth P63.55 billion, Professional Services worth P31.11 billion, Training and Scholarship Expenses worth P30.80 billion and Repairs and Maintenance Expensese worth P26.96 billion.

The 2017 AFR was sent by COA Commissioner Michael Aguinaldo last September to President Rodrigo Duterte, House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Senate President Tito Sotto.

According to a COA circular in 2015, intelligence and confidential funds are not subject to normal auditing procedures with documents of disbursements submitted in a sealed envelop to the Intelligence and Confidential Fund Audit Unit under the Office of the Chairperson of the COA.