We are writing to correct an erroneous news article about the performance bonuses received by the Board of Trustees (BOT) of the National Livelihood Development Corp. (NLDC), written by columnist Jess Diaz in the November 2, 2013 edition of your newspaper (“GOCC head facing pork raps got P342K performance bonus”, page 4, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013).
The amount mentioned in the article (Php 342,000) refer to total benefits received by every Board of Trustee, inclusive of per diem for attending EXECOM meetings (Php 5,000 per meeting) and BOT meetings (Php 10,000 per meeting) which are standard and allowable incentives provided to a GOCC governing body. The Performance Based Bonus (PBB) for 2012 authorized by the Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG) comprised only 47 percent of the total benefits. The PBB granted to trustees Gondelina G. Amata, Concepcion G. Dodd and Manuel Q. Gotis amounts only to P162,000 each while trustee Susana E. Leones received P171,000.
Mr. Jess Diaz’ article is an exaggeration of the amount and tends to mislead the public about “hefty” performance bonuses of NLDC’s head and BOT members. We attached the accurate information we sent to the Hon. Congressman Neri J. Colmenares, who we presume is the source of the information for your article in the Philippine STAR. What we submitted as response to the Honorable Congressman’s request for full transparency (copies attached) was twisted and exploited irresponsibly in the print media.
Allow us to also express the fact that the PBB granted to the NLDC BOT and staff was based on the performance of our mandate which we reiterate is not PDAF. The PBB was granted on the basis of NLDC’s 2012 performance in its lending operations (i.e. wholesale lending to microfinance institutions for relending especially to Agrarian Reform Communities) allowing the Corporation to earn its keep and earn a positive net income, fifty percent (50%) of which is reverted back to the National Government in the form of corporate dividends.
We participated as implementing agency of PDAF with hesitance (expressed in writing to the Department of Budget and Management sometimes in 2008), charging a management fee of 3% and not 10% as voiced out by whistle blower Mr. Ben Hur Luy. The management fee is booked in our accounts and contributes in part to the amount reverted to the National Government as annual dividends.
We find it grossly unfair to crucify NLDC for its participation in the PDAF when our officers have yet to receive their formal notice from the Ombudsman. We also find it irresponsible to equate the performance-based bonus received for 2012 to accusations related to NLDC’s role as one of the implementing agency in the PDAF whose audit covers the period from 2007 to 2009.
-RAQUEL B. CASTRO, Head, Planning and Promotions Division, National Livelihood Development Corporation.