By the time the Obligation Request (ObR) was “baptized” by COA Circular 2006-002 the following year, the requesting party now have to certify that “supporting documents are valid, proper and legal” in addition to the preceding (OS) certification that “charges to appropriation/allotment necessary, lawful and under my direct supervision”. The rationale:
In line with NGAS implementation, this circular delineates the responsibilities of the Heads of the Requesting Office/Unit, the Budget Unit and the Accounting Unit as well as the Treasurer in Local Government Units. It also prescribes the revised forms to be used in recording obligations incurred and disbursements
Clearly, there were already changes in policy the same time ObR was introduced. The responsibilities of the Heads of the Requesting Unit, the Budget Unit, the Accounting Unit and the Treasurer are hereby set forth (with the same COA Circular 2006-002, for LGUs) as follows:
- The Head of the Requesting Unit shall prepare the Obligation Request (ObR) and the Disbursement Voucher (DV) and certify on the necessity and legality of charges to appropriation and allotment under his direct supervision. He shall also certify to the validity, propriety and legality of supporting documents;
- The Head of the Budget Unit shall certify the existence of available appropriation, take charge of budgetary activities as provided under Section 344 and Section 475, respectively, of R.A. 7160, the Local Government Code, and shall maintain the Registries of Appropriations, Allotments and Obligations as prescribed under the Manual on the New Government Accounting System for Local Government Units;
- The Head of the Accounting Unit shall certify the obligation of allotment and completeness of supporting documents in the DV;
- The Treasurer shall certify the availability of funds in the DV as provided in the Local Government Code;
- The Treasurer shall prepare the Daily Cash Position Report to be submitted to the Local Chief Executive.
What are those supporting documents? If it was only the PR, then it should be identified clearly as it or at least the rationale reflects singularity (document vs. documents). It could only mean that there are two or more. It could not be a PR alone.
What would be those “budgetary activities” stated in No.2 above “as provided under Sec.344 and Sec.475 of RA 7160”? As we may recall, it refers to certification prior to disbursement of funds. Reading thru the statutory intent of that section, the ObR now used covers the purpose of Section 344 of RA 7160. Section 475 on the other hand only elaborates the title, qualification, roles and function of the Budget Officer. Hence, there is no need to have the three (3) signatures originally required by Section 344 in one certification alone. The Disbursement Voucher (DV) now caters the signature of the Chief Accountant and the Treasurer.
What happens now to Section 360 of RA 7160 where a certification prior to requisition was mandatory? The answer is a more recent law – RA 9184.
Section 76. Repealing Clause. x x x This law amends Title Six, Book Two of Republic Act No. 7160, otherwise known as the “Local Government Code of 1991” x x x
What is Title Six Book 2 of RA 7160? It was titled “Property and Supply Management in Local Government Units”. It covered Section 355 up to Section 383, where Section 360 is included. It will now be clearer that the argument of requisition accompanied by a certification, at least prior to procurement, is already obsolete. Even if the ObR nowadays served the same purpose of ALOBS (or even ROA) in NGAS, the procedure do not hold true today due the repealing clause of RA 9184.