(Metro News) Cayetano bewails donation of city-owned service vehicles to various barangays

July 6, 2010 9:59 pm 

MANILA, July 6 — Taguig City Mayor Laarni Cayetano on Tuesday decried the “midnight” wholesale donation of at least 200 city-owned service vehicles and utility trucks to various barangays less than two weeks before she took over the post from her predecessor Freddie Tinga, now Taguig’s 2nd District Representative to Congress.

“When we took over, there was practically not a single service vehicle left in the city hall. We later found out the former mayor distributed it to 25 barangay chairmen allied with them, just before we came in,” Atty. Darwin Icay, one of Cayetano’s spokesperson, said.

“These donations were done without just cause and only to paralyze or sabotage the operation of the incoming administration. Clearly there is politics in this,” he added.

Icay said the supposed “donations” were illegal since they did not go through the proper appraisal and disposal procedures.

He said at least 190 vehicles have been transferred to 25 of the 28 barangays in Taguig.

These vehicles include 38 Multi-Carry vans, five Toyota Innova, a Toyota Altis, 10 dump trucks, 19 electric tricycles, a tourist bus, a Mobile Clinic van, and an amphibian truck.

Icay said they are still finalizing the inventory of all city-owned vehicles and equipment to determine where other missing properties have gone.

According to Icay, the City Council has confirmed the donations, claiming the donated vehicles were unserviceable.

However, he noted that each vehicle should have been certified by the Bids and Awards Committee as unserviceable, and the local Commission on Audit (COA) should have appraised its value and physical condition.

“There are proper procedures in the disposal of government properties. Clearly, these were not followed. Why would you donate, in wholesale, all these vehicles at the end of your term?” Icay asked.

He cited COA Memorandum No. 88-569 (Guidelines for Appraisal of Unserviceable Property) and National Budget Circular No. 425 (Prescribing Manual on Disposal of Government Property) which detail the process of disposal of government-owned properties.

Icay said the first week of the Cayetano administration was difficult because the city hall was virtually “ransacked” of valuable office equipment such as computers, important files and records, and service vehicles.

“We are having a hard time tracking down and recovering important equipment that suddenly went missing,” he said.

Cayetano, wife of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, took over as mayor on June 30 after beating Tinga’s father, retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Dante Tinga.

Majority of the officials of the Taguig City government including re-elected Vice Mayor George Elias are allied with the Tingas.

The PNA tried to reach the Tingas for comment re the missing vehicles and equipment to no avail. (PNA) vcs/CLTC/utb

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