COA: Davao accountable for 11,000 contractual workers

By , on June 17, 2015

Government employees in front of the Davao City Hall (Photo from the City Government of Davao's official Facebook page)
Government employees in front of the Davao City Hall (Photo from the City Government of Davao’s official Facebook page)

MANILA – The Commission on Audit questioned Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte for hiring 11,246 contractual workers last year.

Among the thousands, 4,754 workers were all assigned to the city mayor’s office, costing the local government P708 million. State auditors then asked if this number of workers was necessary.

According to the commission, Davao’s lack of clear policy in hiring workers cultivated patronage.

“The city has no written policy or manual on the hiring of employees particularly under contract of services and job orders. Identification of persons to be hired for such nature rests directly upon the recommendation of the department heads and other officials of the city,” the COA said in a report.

In total, Davao city government has 14,499 workers with just 3,253 of them as regular employees. With the remaining 11,000 or the majority of the workers, 6,081 were contractual employees and 5,165 were under job orders.

With regards to salaries, the regular workers’ wages were taken from the city’s personal services budget while the contractual employees’ pays were taken from the maintenance and other operating expenses budget.

Furthermore, the state auditors were dubious if the contractual workers were really rendering services as there were no documents such as daily time records or attendance logs to prove such. The non-regulars’ contracts also did not specify their nature of works.

“These conditions cast doubt that entries in the daily time record of these employees…are manipulated, thus regularity and validity of the related expenditures could not be ascertained,” the COA report continued.

The commission also asked why there were only few regular employees in the city government when a lot of the contractual workers were rendering services for more than a decade now.

Davao City’s Human Resource Management Office, for their part, vowed to formulate new guidelines in hiring contractual and job order workers.