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PAF charging for mercy flights, since when?

10:21 PM September 26, 2013

I was completely surprised that the 2012 COA (Commission on Audit) report included me among the public officials who owed the Philippine Air Force (PAF) P70 million for the use of military air assets in 1994 (“GMA, 44 others owe PAF P70M for aircraft rental,” News, 9/19/13).

The COA report lists me as owing over P60,078 for the use of an airplane in 1994 when I was on my second term as senator. I did not know that I owed the PAF anything.

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I can only recall requesting for the use of a  PAF plane once for a mercy flight. Rommel Luy of Santiago City was badly injured in an accident and had to be flown to Manila for immediate surgery.

I was under the impression that the PAF performed mercy flights whenever necessary since, as a member of Congress then, I supported a “social outreach services” item in the PAF budget.

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During the last 19 years, the PAF never informed me or my office of this account, nor did I receive any billing of P60,078 for that mercy flight. I learned of this obligation only from a recent Inquirer news report.

I am very much willing to settle the

obligation.

—HEHERSON T. ALVAREZ,

commissioner,

Climate Change Commission

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TAGS: Climate Change Commission, Commission on Audit, news, Philippine Air Force
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