The Commission on Audit Regional Office No. XIII (CARAGA) marked three milestones with the inauguration of its newly constructed Provincial Satellite Auditing Office (PSAO) in Surigao del Norte on 16 October and a new multi-purpose covered court inside the Regional Compound in Butuan City on 17 October 2018. Regional officials and personnel likewise took the Integrity Pledge oath on 17 October.

Commissioner Roland C. Pondoc, Assistant Commissioner Lourdes M. Castillo, Director Carmelita J. Pagayawan, Director Virgilio L. Mendez, and Regional Director Usmin P. Diamel led the inauguration of the PSAO Surigao del Norte, the second completed PSAO in Region XIII. Surigao City Mayor Ernesto T. Matugas, Surigao del Norte Governor Sol F. Matugas and other local officials, and several COA Central Office and Regional Staff graced the occasion.

Commissioner Pondoc expressed his heartfelt gratitude to the Matugas family for their continuing support to the endeavors of the Commission. Director Diamel, on the other hand, emphasized the importance of the Commission’s partnership with local government units and its commitment for an effective and efficient public service through concerted efforts with its stakeholders and the public.

PSAO Surigao del Norte shall be the new home of the different local, national, and corporate audit teams assigned in Surigao City, Province of Surigao del Norte, and the municipalities within the province, including the audit teams assigned in Siargao Island.

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Quezon City – The Commission on Audit (COA) and the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) formed a partnership to strengthen coordination and cooperation in both agencies’ anti-corruption efforts.

COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and PACC Chairperson Dante La. Jimenez signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on 2 October 2018 at the COA Commission Proper Boardroom. COA Commissioners Jose A. Fabia and Roland C. Pondoc, COA Assistant Commissioner Alexander B. Juliano and PACC Executive Director Eduardo V. Bringas witnessed the signing.

COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and PACC Chairperson Dante La. Jimenez sign the Memorandum of Agreement to strengthen coordination and cooperation in the anti-corruption efforts of both agencies. COA Commissioners Jose A. Fabia and Roland C. Pondoc, COA Assistant Commissioner Alexander B. Juliano and PACC Executive Director Eduardo V. Bringas witnessed the signing.

The MOA calls for collaborative efforts and harmonized approach for both agencies in the performance of their respective mandates. It covers, in the area of coordination and cooperation- referral of information, consultative meetings, continuing review and joint task force on matters within their jurisdiction.

“The purpose of the MOA is to strengthen the cooperation and coordination between our agencies intended to benefit both in terms of the performance of our respective mandates. The main point is to be able to provide relevant information between us that will help us do our jobs better,” Chairperson Aguinaldo said.

“We will take this MOA by heart and this will be one of our bibles in instituting a corrupt-free bureaucracy,” noted Chairman Jimenez. He stressed the importance of the joint task force and noted that many of the complaints the Commission submitted to the President have many COA findings. Chairman Jimenez also announced that he will be having an Ulat sa Bayan on 4 October 2018.

Created on 4 October 2017 through Executive Order No. 43, the PACC’s powers and functions include the hearing and investigation of administrative cases against appointees with Salary Grade 26 and above as well as the conduct of fact-finding inquiries and lifestyle checks against all covered presidential appointees and other public officers allegedly involved in graft and corrupt practices.



The Commission on Audit (COA) and the City Government of Calamba, Laguna entered into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on 26 September 2018 to officially start the construction of a COA Provincial Satellite Auditing Office (PSAO) in Laguna which is to be considered a symbol of COA’s independence and interdependence.

COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and Calamba City Mayor Justin Marc SB. Chipeco signed the MOA for the usufruct of parcel of land intended for the COA PSAO in Laguna. The signing was witnessed by Regional Director Mario G. Lipana of COA Regional Office No. IV-A and Calamba City Administrator Allan D. Zacarias.

COA Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo and Calamba City Mayor Justin Marc SB. Chipeco show off the signed Memorandum of Agreement for the piece of land intended for the Provincial Satellite Auditing Office in Calamba. The signing was witnessed by COA Regional Director Mario G. Lipana and Calamba City Administrator Allan D. Zacarias. Also in picture are Calamba Vice Mayor Roseller H. Rizal and City Councilor Moises E. Morales.

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The Civil Service Commission (CSC) recognized State Auditor Romel C. Espiña of the Commission on Audit (COA) Regional Office No. XIII, Butuan City among the country’s outstanding public servants. The CSC conferred on Auditor Espiña the Dangal ng Bayan Award for exemplary conduct and ethical behavior. He was among ten recipients of the award.

Auditor Espiña was cited for “steadfastly upholding honesty, integrity, competence, and patriotism in the performance of his functions. His strong commitment in pursuing the Commission on Audit’s fight against graft and corruption resulted in the suspension of government officials and recovery of public funds amounting to millions of pesos in the municipalities placed under his watch.”

The Dangal ng Bayan award is conferred to an individual for performance of an extraordinary act or public service and consistent demonstration of exemplary ethical behavior on the basis of his observance of the eight norms of behavior provided under Republic Act No. 6713 or the “Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.”

In last year’s COA Salutes the Best program, the Commission conferred on Auditor Espiña the Gawad Kagitingan for his demonstration of unusual courage and bravery in the discharge of audit work. Auditor Espiña faced the challenges of going to his place of assignment located at distant island municipalities, often experiencing perilous trips because of bad weather.

Dangal ng Bayan recipient State Auditor Romel C. Espiña of COA Regional Office No. XIII with Chairperson Michael G. Aguinaldo, Commissioners Jose A. Fabia and Isabel D. Agito (ret.) and Regional Director Usmin P. Diamel in last year’s COA Salutes the Best program where he was conferred the Gawad Kagitingan award.

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Homepage of the newly launched IARO website

The Commission on Audit’s (COA) International Audit and Relations Office (IARO) launched its own website to make the Commission’s various stakeholders see and understand its work in the international arena on 12 September 2018 at the SAADO Auditorium.

COA’s IARO integrates the coordination and supervision of the multi-faceted work involving international audit and relations. The IARO exercises control over the audit of international organizations where the COA is the External Auditor as well as coordinates the proper observance of the Commission’s commitments as member of the international audit community.

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