FRESH from her attacks on some of her fellow senators over the way they handled the blue ribbon committee hearing on the supposedly overpriced Makati City Hall 2 and Parking Building, Sen. Nancy Binay on Sunday trained her guns on the Commission on Audit (COA) that is currently conducting a special audit on the controversial structure.
Binay especially set her sights on COA Commissioner Heidi Mendoza whom she described as a known adversary of their family.
She, however, stressed that she sees nothing wrong with the conduct of special audit “as long as it is being done fairly and objectively.”
The senator said Mendoza is an attack dog of their political enemies and was mainly responsible in filing a graft case against her mother, Dr. Elenita Binay, in her capacity as former mayor of Makati City (Metro Manila).
The senator, in an interview aired over radio dzBB, declared that “she [Mendoza] is out to destroy my family.”
She urged COA chief Grace Pulido-Tan to concentrate on investigating bigger cases such as the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) and the Priority Development Assistance fund (PDAF) releases made after 2010 instead of the Makati Parking Building.
“I hope the interest given by COA Chair Tan in conducting a special audit on the Makati building will also be given to the conduct of the special audit for DAP and PDAF,” Binay said.
She noted that it has already been more than a year since the probe on the PDAF or pork barrel scam and the expose on allegedly illegal releases of the Malampaya fund but until now COA has not given the public even a summary of its audit report covering the years 2010 to 2013.
Tan, during a hearing on the 2014 General Appropriations Act (GAA) last year, admitted that the commission received P143.7 million from the DAP in 2012.
She also admitted that she wrote the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) requesting funding for the upgrade of COA computers and the procurement of other equipment and services.
Tan was responding to queries of Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, who questioned the objectivity of COA in its audit on the propriety of the DAP.
According to Estrada, COA cannot be objective in its audit on the DAP because the agency itself is a recipient and beneficiary of the controversial spending mechanism.
According to Tan, part of the DAP money was used to buy service vehicles for the agency’s head and commissioners, while P68.3 million was used for the agency’s information technology (IT) infrastructure program.
“I’m still hoping that COA will be fair on its special audit in Makati,” Binay said.
Meanwhile, the senator also expressed belief that the ongoing Makati building probe could further bring down the ratings of the Senate, because of the perception that some senators are using the chamber for their personal interest.
Binay said the people elected senators to help pursue needs of the majority, not serve the senators’ personal ambition.
“I don’t know if the Senate can still get out of its current image, which is all about personal interest and ambition,” she added.