Commission on Audit Headlines the INTOSAI Working Group on Public Debt 2023 Annual Meeting in Cairo, Egypt

Demonstrating its active global role in advancing audit governance and leadership, the Commission on Audit, led by Chairperson Gamaliel A. Cordoba, presides over the Working Group on Public Debt (WGPD) Annual Meeting in Cairo, Egypt from May 8 – 10, 2023. The WGPD roots its mandate from one of the three Goal Committees of the International Organization of Supreme Institutions (INTOSAI) Knowledge Sharing and Knowledge Services. As the 2nd WGPD Chair, the Commission on Audit took over the post in 2017 from Auditoria Superior de la Federaciôn, the Supreme Audit Institution of Mexico that held the Chairmanship for 25 years.

The 2023 Cairo WGPD Annual Meeting carries the theme of the Role of SAIs in Promoting Debt Transparency. Against the backdrop of the post-pandemic environment, the 41-member Working Group coming from regional organizations of AFROSAI, ARABOSAI, ASOSAI, EUROSAI, PASAI, CAROSAI, OLACEFS as well as the US GAO and experts from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the International Budget Partnership provide the core impetus in forwarding the meeting’s theme. Along with this are the lessons learned shared by the member SAIs that create the vital cogs in the refresh and refocusing of public debt management toward better transparency and accountability.

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Japan honors COA Chairperson Cordoba with prestigious Order of the Rising Sun

The Japanese Government awarded Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Gamaliel A. Cordoba the prestigious Order of the Rising Sun in recognition of his “significant contributions to advancing cooperation between Japan and the Philippines in the field of telecommunications” while he was chief of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).

Established in 1875, the Order of the Rising Sun is the oldest national decoration awarded by the Japanese Government to individuals who have rendered outstanding contributions to the state, including the promotion of Japanese relations with other countries in various fields such as diplomacy, research and education, social welfare, economy, culture and sports.

Chairperson Cordoba will receive the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon. He joins three other Filipino recipients of the award this year: former Foreign Affairs secretary Alberto Romulo (Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun), former Defense secretary and now Bases Conversion and Development Authority Chairman Delfin Lorenzana (Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star), and maritime anthropologist Dr. Cynthia Neri Zayas (Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette).

“I am deeply humbled by this award. It is a recognition of the joint efforts of the Philippines and Japan to improve telecommunications services in the country and was one of my landmark projects at the NTC,” Chairperson Cordoba said.

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Chairperson Cordoba highlights leveraging technology during celebration of COA’s 124th anniversary

Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Gamaliel A. Cordoba highlighted the use of technology to improve audit techniques and procedures during the unveiling of COA's 124th founding anniversary marker at the COA Central Office to signal the start of COA's anniversary celebration with the theme, "COA @ 124: Institusyong Maasahan, Dangal at Tiwala ay Pangalagaan."

Chairperson Cordoba, who is set to receive the prestigious Order of the Rising Sun award from the Japanese government in recognition of his significant contributions to advancing cooperation between Japan and the Philippines in the field of telecommunications, said that he plans to leverage technology to improve audit techniques and procedures such as development of an automated audit system for e-collections and e-payments and using artificial intelligence to crunch big data to determine patterns and detect fraud.

With his experience and expertise in digital technology and telecommunications, Chairperson Cordoba hopes to usher the Commission to new heights through the digital transformation of state audit. "I envision a digital transformation for COA where we contribute to digitizing government transactions including collections in partnership with all government agencies. In the process, we introduce e-audit as the manner of conducting audit," the Chairperson said.

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COA’s Director Adela Dondonilla to represent the Philippines as Chair of the 63rd Session of the UN Committee for Programme and Coordination

Commission on Audit (COA) Director Adela L. Dondonilla will represent the Philippines as Chair of the 63rd Session of the United Nations Committee for Programme and Coordination (CPC), the main subsidiary organ of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and the General Assembly for planning, programming, and coordination in the United Nations.

Ambassador Antonio M. Lagdameo, Permanent Representative of the Philippines to the United Nations in New York, announced that the Philippines was elected by acclamation as Chairperson of the United Nations CPC during the Committee’s Organizational Session held recently. “The Philippines’ chairmanship is a testament to the country’s ability in taking part in various leadership roles of the organization and its relatable bodies,” Ambassador Lagdameo said. According to the Philippine Mission, “it will also allow the country to oversee and steer the negotiations, which examine holistically the Secretary General’s work programme vis-à-vis its budgetary implications and corresponding mandate for effective implementation.”

Director Dondonilla will assume chairmanship during the Committee’s 63rd session which will be held at the United Nation’s Headquarters in New York City from 30 May to 30 June 2023. She will be assisted by the officials and staff of the Philippine Mission.

A veteran member of COA’s elite pool of United Nations auditors, Director Dondonilla is currently the director of the Commission’s Cluster 1, Corporate Government Sector handling banking and credits.

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