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PIA Press Release

DSWD chief orders audit of department funds

Quezon City (13 October) -- IN AN UNPRECEDENTED move, Social Welfare and Development Secretary Esperanza Cabral has ordered a comprehensive audit of funds and operations of all 66 DSWD centers and institutions nationwide, including its Self-Employment Assistance-Kaunlaran (SEA-K) Program, a micro-enterprise development project for the poor.

Cabral herself supervised the cross-posting of 17 regional internal auditors and a select group of social workers whose task is to see whether social welfare programs, including the handling of donations, relief operations and financial grants, are properly implemented and actually benefiting the poor. The aim, she said, was to ensure a graft and corruption-free agency.

Earlier, the DSWD tapped Inter-Faith groups to help monitor DSWD relief operations.

It is part of our efforts to make our activities more transparent and to make sure that we are accountable to the people we serve, Cabral told the Inquirer in an interview.

We feel that the Inter-Faith groups are good partners in this endeavor. We rely on them to keep us honest, she added.

The audit of the centers and institutions is in support of my directive to raise standards of service and showcase them as centers of excellence, Cabral said.

The audit will also focus on personnel and fund management; property, supply and procurement management; asset and property management; records, reporting and information systems management; emergency and disaster management; and case management.

On top of this comprehensive audit is the DSWDs Internal Audit Service, which is mandated to regularly examine and evaluate the adequacy and effectiveness of the agencys internal controls, including the implementation of their Integrity Development Action Plan (IDAP).

For the first semester of 2006, the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC) ranked DSWD as the second most-compliant agency in integrity development among the national government agencies and local government units. (PIA) [top]

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