By Ben Rosario
Government auditors have scolded officials of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) for undertaking projects worth P700 million with open ended completion.
In its 2017 annual audit report for PAGASA, the Commission on Audit also criticized the “excessive” purchase of 700 units of radiosonde transmitters with free meteorological balloons.
COA said the P11.88 million purchase was equivalent to a one-year inventory or four times bigger than the usual maximum three-monthinventory limit.
“PAGASA failed to specify the project schedules and required submission of approved Annual Work Plan for 12 locally funded projects indicating poor and unrealistic planning for the project, thus, accomplishments were not properly described when to attain and perform outputs,” observed COA.
According to the audit agency PAGASA spent P700 million for infrastructure and weather forecasting equipment but did not state in the program the expected date of completion of the proposed projects.
Among the projects that were listed by PAGASA were:
– Construction of National Meteorological and Climate Center (NMCC) Building – P392 million
– Advanced Date Consolidation, Enhancement of Web and Dissemination including Mirror Forecasting – P136 million
-Advanced Visualization and Enhancement of Weather Forecasting – P86.5 million
-Unified Communication Project – P31.83 million
-Climate Monitoring and Prediction System (CLIMPS) – P17.743 million
-Farm Weather Information System – P1.456 million
-Sectoral Impact Modelling System – P10.25 million
-Research and Development Information System – P7.445 million
-Library and Training Management Information System – P2.805 million
-Administrative Services Enhancement Project – P3.106 million
-Single Storey Building River Basin Flood Forecasting and Warning Center – P4.416 million
-Construction of New Synoptic Building – P7.124 million
Auditors stressed that setting target dates of completion and the specific outputs and accomplishments is a mandatory task of PAGASA.
“This can also hamper the intention of the projects to arrive at best benefits of serving its objectives, i.e. for the stakeholders to use it at soonest possible time,” stated COA.
ON the purchase of the radiosonde transmitters with free meteorological balloons, state auditors said that while PAGASA could buy up to one year’s supply of weather balloons, the deliveries and payments should be staggered and the inventory would not exceed the 3-month limit at any time during the period.
Auditors disclosed that PaGASA also failed to prepare the proper facilities to store the sensitive weather prediction devices.
“We recommended that Management ensure that all procurement of supplies and materials shall not exceed the three-month requirement through proper planning to prevent incurrence of overstocking that will lead to obsolescence and damage of inventory items,” the audit report stated.