COA exec: Revilla endorsed Napoles’ NGO for ‘pork’ projects

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

A COMMISSION on Audit (COA) official told the anti-graft court on Thursday that detained Senator Ramon Revilla Jr. endorsed the fake non-government organizations of Janet Lim-Napoles that received his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).

During the bail hearing of Revilla at the Sandiganbayan first division, COA assistant commissioner Susan Garcia testified that Revilla endorsed National Agribusiness Corporation (Nabcor) as one of the implementing agencies for his pork barrel fund-funded programs.

"He (Revilla) endorsed Nabcor as one of the implementing agencies. He endorsed the NGO to be a partner in the implementation of the project, and he assigned his legislative staff lawyer (Richard Cambe) as his representative," Garcia said.

Revilla, Napoles and Cambe, the senator's former top aide, face non-bailable cases of plunder in relation to alleged misuse of Revilla's PDAF allocation. The Sandiganbayan ordered for their arrests in June.

Pressed by Associate Justice Rodolfo Ponferrada if Revilla's acts were wrong, Garcia said the NGOs should have been selected through a public bidding.

"NGOs are not mentioned in the General Appropriations Act. It should be the implementing agencies who should implement the project," Garcia said.

She noted that the rules and regulations in selecting the NGOs, which are stated in the General Procurement Policy of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) should be strictly followed.

Garcia added that the status of NGOs selected to implement the projects financed by Revilla's PDAF allotment were "questionable".

"The NGOs have no business permit to operate. We cannot find their location or they are in a residential area, and they use the taxpayer identification number (TIN) of another supplier," Garcia said. (Sunnex)

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