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BACIWA to tackle COA PrimeWater deal report

The management of the Bacolod City Water District (BACIWA) is expected to deliberate on the 2020 audit report of the Commission on Audit (COA) that questioned the legality of its joint venture agreement (JVA) with PrimeWater Infrastructure Corp. (PrimeWater), which is owned by the Villar family.

BACIWA acting general manager Michael Soliva said Wednesday, July 14, that they are “working out to answer the findings and recommendation” of COA.

In its 2020 audit report that was posted on its website, COA recommended that the management should seek clarifications and reconciliation to ascertain the legality of the joint venture operation between the district and PrimeWater.

COA also noted that the management should create an inventory committee to conduct the physical inventory of all property and equipment of the district, as well as to conduct an investigation on the existence of Construction in Progress (CIP) accounts as it could not ascertain these accounts due to non-inventory.

Soliva, when asked about the COA ruling on the legality of the joint venture deal between BACIWA and PrimeWater, said he “could not give a specific answer” to the commission’s findings.

He said the management and the board of directors have yet to deliberate on the COA recommendations, adding that “we will see how we will answer and how we will comply with the recommendations.”

He said they understand the recommendation as it is part of COA’s job to conduct an audit report.

BACIWA was directed by COA to act on its audit observations and recommendations 60 days upon the receipt of the report.

PrimeWater took over the operations of BACIWA in November 2020, but the deal displaced 60 workers due to position redundancy.*

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