“It is no big deal!”
This was the reaction of Roderick Samonte, chairman of the Kasadya Bacolod Foundation Inc. tasked by Mayor Monico Puentevella to handle the preparations for the coming MassKara celebration, regarding the non-accreditation by the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod of the KBFI.
Samonte said he received the letter of the Department of Interior and Local Government stating that the KBFI cannot be accredited because of the required one year existence.
He said it is just fine with the group as they already anticipated the decision since there is an existing guideline that needs to be followed.
Councilor Ceasar Distrito, chairman of the SP Committee on Laws, Ordinances and Good Government, had inquired with the DILG if the SP can accredit the KBFI that was organized only on August 7.
Upon verification, his Committee also found out that the Foundation was accredited with the Securities and Exchange Commission on the same day.
Acting Bacolod Local Government Officer Glenn Guzman said that, based on the legal opinion of the DILG Region 6, the law is very clear that the one-year track record is mandatory.
Guzman said that if one is registered with the SEC, it has juridical personality to do business in the Philippines. But if one is credited by the SP, one can join special bodies and can receive funds from the city government.
But for purposes of operation, KBFI can operate and can receive donations from private sectors but not from the government, he said.
Guzman said that in the past MassKara, the financial assistance was given by the city directly to the barangays that participated in the activities. The same process will be observed by the KBFI.
“We recognize that and it is no big deal,” Samonte said.
All the funds they have requested will be directly forwarded to the barangays and sectors that will take part in the celebration of the MassKara Festival, he said.
Samonte said the seven barangays earlier reported to have failed to liquidate funds provided by the city government for last year’s MassKara Festival had already complied with the liquidation report required by the Commission on Audit.
He said there is a committee that is reviewing the liquidation reports of the barangays to determine who can avail of financial assistance from the city government.
Meanwhile, City Administrator Rolando Villamor said he has submitted a letter request to Puentevella to allow him to practice his law profession once again.
He explained the need for him to return to private practice, particularly rendering legal assistance to human rights victims, which is his advocacy, he said.
“It is part of my system since Martial Law and I want to finish my remaining cases”, Villamor said.
He is very much willing to comply with the required eight hours of duty daily, he said.
Villamor said other lawyers handling positions in the city government need to personally ask permission from Puentevella if they want to continue their private practice while holding office at the government center.*CGS