Caritas Philippines has called on Filipinos to rally behind the Commission on Audit (COA) which bared several deficiencies in the financial management of different government agencies.
“We call on all taxpayers, all sectors and stakeholders: let us rally behind COA and protect its independence,” Kidapawan Bishop Jose Colin Bagaforo, national director of Caritas Philippines, said in a statement Wednesday, Aug. 18.
“It is but right and expected of the Filipino people to support COA in flagging misuses and abuses of public funds to finally serve justice,” he added.
Bagaforo assailed President Duterte for ordering government agencies to ignore the reports and for asking COA to stop publishing their initial findings.
“Public funds are people’s money. Ergo, justice demands transparency and accountability. It is our moral obligation to let the public know, for they have the fundamental right to know,” he said.
“Our President must not forget the cardinal rule for all civil servants: public service is public trust,” said Bagaforo.
COA had released its audit reports on different government agencies, such as the Office of the President, the Department of Health, Office of the Solicitor General, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Presidential Communications Operations Office, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, as well as local government units, like Davao City, among others.