15 GOCCs fattened paychecks by P775M in 2018, says COA

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    THE Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), the Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF or PagIBIG Fund), and the International Broadcasting Corp. (IBC-13) paid the biggest unauthorized extra compensation to their officials and employees in 2018 among 15 government-owned or controlled corporations (GOCCs) flagged by the Commission on Audit (COA).

    The COA released the list in its 2018 Annual Financial Report on Government Corporations submitted to the Office of the President, the Senate and the House of Representatives last September 19.

    Among the questioned stipends were Personal Economic Relief Allowances (PERA), excess retirement benefits, gratuity benefits, separation pay, meal allowances, financial assistance, and Collective Negotiation Agreement (CNA) incentives.

    Auditors said the fatter paychecks were released by the GOCCs without adhering to “pertinent compensation laws, rules, and regulations in the grant of compensation, allowances, bonuses, and other benefits.”

    Government corporations were reminded that extra compensation cannot be paid out arbitrarily as prior approval by the Office of the President is a requirement under Presidential Decree No. 1597 and memorandum order No. 20 series of 2001.

    The COA recommended that all the GOCCs in the list “refrain/discontinue the payment of compensation/allowances… in the absence of legal bases/authority to grant the same.”

    Based on the COA’s list, the GSIS paid P260.53 million, PagIBIG paid P248.32 million, and IBC-13 paid P169.081 million.

    Auditors tagged the GSIS extra pay of P100,000 to each one of the 2,615 employees last year under the pension fund’s “Galing ng Pagkilala” as an “illegal expenditure” as it was not cleared by the Department of Budget and Management or the Office of the President.

    They likewise questioned the source of the funds, noting that the money was charged against the agency’s savings from Corporate Operating Budget.

    In the case of the PagIBIG Fund, the P248.32 million was paid out under a general salary increase despite lack of authorization from the Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG).

    Records showed the general increase in salary made effective August 1, 2018 raised regular wages by P125.563 million, year-end bonuses by P25.117 million,13th month pay by P25.117 million, GSIS employer’s contributions by P15.07 million, EPP Employer’s Contributions by P56.503 million; and PhilHealth Employer’s contributions by P947,632.

    The questioned GSIS disbursement consisted of additional retirement benefits, separation pay and retirement liability totaling P136.2 million and P32.88 million in salaries, allowances and benefits to employees who were allowed continued employment despite reaching the compulsory age of retirement.

    The rest of the GOCCs in COA’s list were the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, P68.95 million; National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation, P11.3 million; Social Housing Finance Corp., P5.658 million; Home Guaranty Corp., P5.6 million; APO Production Unit Inc., P3.134 million; People’s Television Network Inc., P1.413 million; Trade and Investment Development Corp. of the Philippines, P818,000; National Transmission Corp., P461,000; LBP Insurance Brokerage Inc, P247,000; and LBP Resources and Development Corp. P153,000.

    Although the Small Business Corp. and the Philippine National Railways were included in the list, the questioned amount was not disclosed in the report and was only designated as “NQ.”