Functions up to the oversight by the executive

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functions, up to the oversight by the executive department over its operations all the while maintaining its legal status as a non- governmental entity the MECO is, for all intents and purposes, sui generis. We now come to the COA’s contention. The COA argues that, despite being a non-governmental entity, the MECO may still be audited with respect to the "verification fees" for overseas employment documents that the latter collects from Taiwanese employers on behalf of the DOLE.The COA claims that, under Joint Circular No. 3-99, the MECO is mandated to remit to the national government a portion of such "verification fees." The COA, therefore, classifies the MECO as a non- governmental entity " required to pay xxx government share" per the Audit Code. We agree that the accounts of the MECO pertaining to its collection of " verification fees" is subject to the audit jurisdiction of the COA. However, We digress from the view that such accounts are the only ones that ought to be audited by the COA. Upon careful evaluation of the information made available by the records vis-à-vis the spirit and the letter of the laws and executive issuances applicable, We find that the accounts of the MECO pertaining to the fees it was authorized to collect under Section 2(6) of EO No. 15, s. 2001, are likewise subject to the audit jurisdiction of the COA. In its comment, the MECO admitted that roughly 9% of its income is derived from its share in the " verification fees" for overseas employment documents it collects on behalf of the DOLE. The " verification fees" mentioned here refers to the " service fee for the verification of overseas employment contracts, recruitment agreement or special powers of attorney" that the DOLE was authorized to collect under Section 7 of EO No. 1022, which was issued by President Ferdinand E. Marcos on 1 May 1985. These fees are supposed to be collected by the DOLE from the foreign employers of OFWs and are intended to be used for "the promotion of overseas employment and for welfare services to Filipino workers within the area of jurisdiction of [concerned] foreign missions under the administration of the [DOLE]." Joint Circular 3-99 was issued by the DOLE, DFA, the Department of Budget Management, the Department of Finance and the COA in an effort to implement Section 7 of Executive Order No. 1022.120 Thus, under Joint Circular 3-99, the following officials have been tasked to be the " Verification Fee Collecting Officer " on behalf of the DOLE: 1. The labor attaché or duly authorized overseas labor officer at a given foreign post, as duly designated by the DOLE Secretary; 2. In foreign posts where there is no labor attaché or duly authorized overseas labor officer, the finance officer or collecting officer of the DFA duly deputized by the DOLE Secretary as approved by the DFA Secretary; 3. In the absence of such finance officer or collecting officer, the alternate duly designated by the head of the foreign post.
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  • Winter '15
  • Atty. Ignacio
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