Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista, as well as ex-mayor and House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr., want the Commission on Audit to explain the basis of its report that Makati City has dislodged Quezon City as the country’s richest locality in 2017.
In an interview, city administrator Aldrin Cuña said he would write CoA chairperson Michael Aguinaldo “within the week” to ask what the basis of the commission’s audit finding was.
“I think it [CoA] has an insufficient basis that Makati City is no. 1. Come to think of it, Quezon City has a P19-billion budget, while Makati has a P15-billion budget only,” he told the Manila Standard.
“It is just okay if Makati has overtaken in terms of infrastructure and removable assets. Our city is so much bigger in land area than Makati,” he said.
“We expect CoA’s report to change after I have written the commission,” he added.
He said the city had other infrastructure projects that had not yet been completed.
“We will explain that to CoA. As of now, the financial assets of both cities have not yet been taken up,” he said.
“It is understandable why such report showed Makati is the richest when we talk about infrastructure projects,” he cited.
The Makati City government credited its total assets of P196.57 billion or an increase of over P141 billion in 2017 against its 2016 assets of P54.85 billion to the inclusion of public infrastructure projects in the computation of its 2017 assets.
Belmonte, a District 4 representative on his last term, asked: “how can that happen?”
“Did Quezon City include that [in its assets]?” he questioned.
“So in other words, that is an unfair comparison. Let me try... I have figured it out that it could be the reason. I’ll try to look into it if there is a [uniform] formula. I will talk to CoA. I will ask the chairman if they are using the same criteria. If that is the case, then everyone must use the same criteria,” he told the Manila Standard.
COA’s 2017 audit report posted on its official website said Makati had a total asset of P196,573.76 billion with Quezon City on the second spot with total assets of P68,332.47 billion.
In 2016, Quezon City topped the list with total assets of P59.56 billion with Makati City on the second spot with P54.85 billion total assets.