Flood control projects of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) worth P178.8 million have been left unfinished owing to inadequate planning and lack of coordination, state auditors reported.
They cited these observations in the Commission on Audit’s (COA) 2016 audit report on the MMDA.
“Various projects totaling P178,882,627.24 were either not implemented or not completed within the specific contract time due to inadequate planning and absence of coordination mechanism with the DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways), concerned LGUs (local government units), communities and other agencies which hindered the Authority in attaining its objective to mitigate flooding in the Metropolis,” the auditors said.
They reported that P800.9 million was allocated for the implementation of 232 flood control and sewerage projects in Metro Manila from 2014 to 2016.
The COA audit team evaluated the status of the MMDA’s projects under its Flood Control Sewerage and Management Office (FCSMO) which were implemented in Manila (22 projects), Quezon City (21 projects), and Makati (10 projects) from 2014 to 2016 and found that “various projects totaling P168,428,050.24 were not finished within the specific contract time or required completion date as of December 31, 2016.”
“It appeared that there had been no adequate planning done by the Authority (MMDA) to address the inefficient implementation of programs/projects as it was noted that the percentage of projects that incurred delays have continuously increased from 31 percent in 2014 to 49 percent in 2015 and finally to 69 percent in 2016,” the auditors said.
“Moreover, verification disclosed that four flood control projects which were already awarded to the respective contractors with issued Notice to Proceed (NTP) were not yet implemented as of December 31, 2016,” they added.
Based on the COA report, these projects include two proposed drainage improvements in Makati (one along Pasong Tamo, Brgy. Bangkal and another along J.P. Rizal); drainage improvement in Tondo, Manila; and a proposed drainage improvement project in Manila (along Quirino Avenue cor. Pedro Gil and vicinity).
“The significant delays in the implementation of the projects were due to numerous suspension orders issued by the Authority (MMDA) for various reasons,” state auditors said.
Among the reasons cited by MMDA were unfavorable weather conditions, relocation of informal settlers, and pending clearances or permits from LGUs.
“Generally, the causes of delay may have been outside of control by the Authority such as the typhoon and unfavorable weather condition for which a time extension may be approved by the Authority. However, the issues on the relocation of informal settlers and the need for coordination with the LGUs, DPWH and other concerned agencies are factors which are unintentional but procedural and consequential that affect the timely completion of the projects,” the auditors said.