The Commission on Audit (COA) has urged the Philippine Forest Corp. (PFC) to investigate the loss of livestock intended for unemployed farmers and laborers.
In a 2013 audit report on the PFC, state auditors said the corporation signed an agreement in 2008 with a beneficiary goat farm to which it transferred 47 goats.
The goat dispersal agreement was a livelihood project that aimed to open employment opportunities for the jobless farmers and laborers in the countryside.
The auditors, however, found that “(t)he intention to propagate goats was not attained since there was nothing recovered from the 47 heads of goats that were dispersed to a goat farm in 2008 due to lack of dutiful monitoring and reporting as to the status of the animals, resulting in waste of government funds.”
“Further, the total value of these breeding stocks of P0.960 million, including work/other animals of P47,500, or a total of P1.008 million (was) erroneously derecognized from the books as these were without supporting documents, which in effect removed from the records the accountability of the responsible persons,” they said.
The breeding stocks dispersed to the goat farm included 14 Pure Breed Australian Boers and 33 Upgraded Goats, composed of 5 male kids and 11 female kids as well as 24 does and 7 bucks.
The memorandum of agreement (MOA) between the PFC and the goat farm provided that the farm will provide quarterly reports to the PFC regarding the goats’ status and updates.
It said the goat farm will that the goats from PFC are healthy, with shelter and will be properly handled, maintained and protected from disease and mortality.
The loss shall be borne by the goat farm should the death of any or all of the original 47 goats is brought by causes other than fortuitous events or force majeure, when the farm has not exercised diligence of a good father over the livestock.
The farm shall replace the lost goat/s of the same breed and genders within 60 days from notice of loss.
It shall exercise due care and diligence of a good father of a family over goats and their offspring until such time PFC will repossess and take custody of the original live goats and offspring share (50-50 percent sharing whenever a doe gives birth to two offspring, with PFC having the preferred right to obtain the male).
PFC may also take possession of the original goats at any time, except for their offspring that will be owned by the beneficiary goat farm, through sharing and has the right to inspect and access all information from the goat farm any time.
“Very clearly, the foregoing provisions were not dutifully carried out by both PFC and the goat farm, resulting in waste of funds,” the auditors said.
A report dated August 31, 2011 submitted by the PFC Team that visited the goat farm on instruction of the PFC president disclosed that the goats, except for one original and its two offspring or a total of three, were no longer existing because of changing weather conditions.
The report said the beneficiary goat farm did not comply with the provision of the MOA to submit quarterly reports on the status/conditions of the entrusted goats, COA said.
The auditors said the 2012 Annual Audit Report included observations pertaining to non-existing breeding stocks totaling P0.960 million that were still carried in the books.
The audit report noted that PFC was also liable for the loss of the breeding stocks, said because it “failed to perform its obligation” as provided, for in Item (b) of the agreement.”
Item (b) refers to PFC’s right to inspect and access all information from the beneficiary goat farm.
The auditors found upon review of 2013 transactions that PFC derecognized from the books the breeding stocks together with the work/other animals of P47,500 by debiting Retained Earnings totaling P1.008 million and crediting Breeding Stocks and Work/Other Animals accounts for P0.960 million and P47,500, respectively.
The PFC, a government-owned and -controlled corporation (GOCC), is a subsidiary of the Natural Resources Development Corp, an attached agency of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.