Audit of the Comptroller to the Municipality of Colina: they detected irregularities in overtime and payments “not duly supported” to Cristian Labbé

Audit of the Comptroller to the Municipality of Colina: they detected irregularities in overtime and payments "not duly supported" to Cristian Labbé

The Comptroller General of the Republic (CGR) issued its final report – dated February 17 – on an audit of the Municipality of Colina, regarding spending on overtime and contracting services at municipal staff fees. The CGR report -which covers the period from January 1 to December 31, 2020- detected irregularities in the matter.

The irregularities occurred under the management of the former mayor of Colina, Mario Olavarria.

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In the document, the Comptroller reported that the entity “has authorized the use of a special control system (attendance books) for municipal officials -including directors- without this determination being based on the nature of the respective functions they perform” .

Likewise, “the lack of controls in the use of said attendance books was determined, for which reason their records do not ensure the integrity and reliability of the information contained therein and, therefore, they cannot be considered as a reliable registration mechanism,” add the text.

Extra hours

In the period indicated, the CGR reported overtime paid in excess to three officials and improper payments of remuneration.

“Overtime paid in excess to three officials, for a total of $228,118, and improper payments of remuneration, associated with breaches of Mr. Patrick Duran Gatica -current Director of Community Development of the municipality-, for a total of $2,436,880,” said the controlling body.

Recruitment of fees and payments to Labbé

The Comptroller’s Office also tackled the execution of the community program called “On-site Processing of Circulation Permits”, which involved the hiring of 30 municipal officials on a fee basis.

In the execution of the program, the CGR detected paid and unaccredited work, for a total of $2,639,777.

Likewise, in relation to fee servers contracted by the Municipality of Colina, payments were detected that are not duly supported by Cristian Labbé Galileefor $26,526,004, already Eduardo Valdebenito Britofor $1,355,497, respectively, for not being accredited the effective performance of all the work contracted or those that were reported.

Labbé is a former mayor of Providencia and a former military officer. He was also a member of the National Intelligence Directorate (DINA).

On September 30, 2019, the visiting minister Alvaro Mesa Labbé was sentenced to three years in effective prison, in addition to “suspension from public office or office during the time of the sentence”, for the crime of unlawful coercion, which he committed in November 1973 against the student Harry Cohen in full term of military dictatorship.

The ruling was confirmed in April 2020 by the Temuco Court of Appeals, after which he filed an appeal for protection before the Supreme Court.

Apart from the Labbé case, the Comptroller’s Office detailed irregularities in contracting fees made by the Municipal Corporation for Social Development of Colina to personnel of the entity itself.

Specifically, -for the year 2020- duplicate payments to medical personnel were verified, for a total of $65,088,037, “because they carried out their work contracted for fees during part of the working day that they had to fulfill in accordance with the employment contracts that they had in parallel with such a corporation,” says the CGR.

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