By Charmaine A. Tadalan, Reporter
THE Commission on Audit (CoA) has suspended special or fraud audits against 2019 poll candidates in its bid to keep its political neutrality during the election period.
A resolution, dated Oct. 2, showed the suspension period set by the Commission began from the filing of Certificates of Candidacy on Oct. 11 until Election Day on May 13, 2019.
The CoA has disclosed receipt of complaints or requests for a special or fraud audits against candidates both in the national and local elections, and party-list nominees.
“It is necessary for the Commission on Audit, as an independent constitutional body, to uphold its political neutrality by implementing measures aimed at preventing opportunities and circumstances that may impair independence, neutrality and professionalism of the Commission, its officers and employees,” the resolution read.
The commission has decided to desist from organizing teams tasked to audit candidates, based on complaints and/or requests filed or to be filed within the said period.
The suspension will not cover preliminary procedures required in creating special or fraud audit teams.
“The conduct of initial assessment of evaluation of requests for fraud/special audits and such other preliminary procedures prior to the creation of fraud/special audit teams shall not be suspended,” the CoA stated.
Further, special or fraud audits based on complaints or request filed ahead of the CoC filing will not be suspended.