Mark Villar burns P28M due to delays in JICA, ADB projects
The Department of Public Works and Highways led by Secretary Mark Villar was penalized close to P30 million last year for delays in 113 infrastructure projects funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).
In its annual audit report, the Commission on Audit said DPWH had to fork out P27.6 million in commitment fees as it was only able to disburse 15.45 percent or P763 million of the total P4.9 billion foreign loans it received last year.
The foreign-funded projects are:
1) Central Luzon Link Expressway, 4 projects, zero disbursement (JICA)
2) Arterial Road Bypass Project II, 2 projects, 32 percent disbursement (JICA)
3) Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Phase II, 4 projects, 40 percent disbursement (JICA)
4) Flood Risk Management for Cagayan, Tagolaon, and Imus Rivers, 6 projects, 72 percent disbursement (JICA)
5) Road Upgrading and Preservation, 84 projects, 6 percent disbursement (JICA)
6) Road Improvement and Institutional Development, 13 projects, 3 percent disbursement (ADB)
COA said the payment of commitment fees to JICA and ADB were “disadvantageos to the government” and largely due to DPWH’s mismanagement.
Aside from bad weather, COA noted that most of the reasons cited by DPWH in the delays in the project were mostly “procedural and consequential” and could have been avoided if these projects were properly planned nd monitored.
“It is important for management to be aware of the commitment fees in the loan agreement so that a feasible project implementation plan which includes alternative actions that should be undertaken to address deviation could be developed not only to prevent incurrence of huge amount of commitment fees but also to avoid non-availment of loan proceeds since expenditures after the loan closing date could no longer be funded out of the loan proceeds but have to be funded from the GOP budget,” said COA.
COA suggested DPWH should make contractors pay for the commitment fees incurred by the government due to their fault or negligence.