Sen. Lacson proposed institutional amendments to the P4.1-trillion national budget for 2020. These include added funding for landmark programs of the administration, such as the PhilSys (National ID) program, the Universal Health Program, and free tuition. He also sought to deduct funding from programs of agencies such as the DPWH and DoTr due to their underutilization of funds, and realign them to more worthwhile projects.
Sa halip na itago, dapat isapubliko ng mga mambabatas ang kanilang isinusulong na amendments sa pambansang badyet para sa susunod na taon, sa pamamagitan ng pag-post nito sa kani-kanilang website.
Ito ang naging hamon ni Senador Panfilo Lacson sa mga kasamahan sa lehislatura upang siguraduhing walang pork ang mga pondong nakapaloob sa 2020 national budget.
“We should make everything public. That includes all amendments we submit, whether institutional or individual. We have our own websites, we should use them for this purpose, as I did for the 2019 budget,” paliwanag ni Lacson.
Instead of whispering proposed “amendments” to the 2020 national budget or scrawl them on napkins, why not post them online?
Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson issued this challenge to fellow lawmakers Tuesday, adding no less than such a show of transparency would dispel suspicions that the amendments are stained with pork.
“We should make everything public. That includes all amendments we submit, whether institutional or individual. We have our own websites, we should use them for this purpose, as I did for the 2019 budget,” Lacson, an avowed enemy of the pork barrel system, said in an interview on DZBB radio.
To those who remain confused about institutional and individual amendments in the budget, Sen. Lacson differentiates the two in his letter to The Manila Times.
Sen. Lacson’s letter is in response to the challenge of former Sen. Francisco Tatad for further details of the institutional amendments he proposed to the P3.757-trillion national budget for 2019. The letter was sent to The Manila Times last Feb. 19. As the reply has yet to be published after more than one week, this is also for the enlightenment of those who had read former Sen. Tatad’s earlier insinuations and challenge to Sen. Lacson.
To the Manila Standard: It is quite pathetic that Mr. Olivar, instead of helping his former boss clear up the issue of pork in the 2019 budget, chose the path of his fellow talking heads by hurling personal innuendos at the Senator to muddle the issue.
Sen. Legarda did not actually present what she and Rep. Andaya have agreed upon in the small group bicam. She merely articulated to the best of her recollection what the bicam report would be presented for ratification.
Basically, yes, the P160 million per House member plus the billion-peso insertions made by a number of their colleagues, and the P23-billion Department of Public Works and Highways insertions by a number of senators plus other insertions in different agencies have all been retained.
Sadly, no matter how hard I argued last night, I only have one vote although I have good reason to believe that some like-minded colleagues are supportive of deleting all pork insertions, particularly the excessive and unconscionable realignments made not only by our House counterpart, but by a number of our colleagues as well.
On a positive note, all appropriations for flood control, particularly dredging, desilting and the like have been deleted to be realigned to capital outlay for purchase of dredging machines. Also, the Department of Health realignment that the Senate introduced and most of my institutional amendments have been retained, like the 240-day-a-year school feeding program for wasted and nearly wasted school children, additional allowance for teachers, some appropriations cover for laws passed regarding our age old veterans, augmentation budget requested by the judiciary, activation of one infantry division, etc.
More than that, hopefully, I was able to enlighten the public because of the public discourse that transpired, for or against the outlawed pork barrel. I would say, we have gained some headway in this regard.
Hopefully, the President and his economic managers will further scrutinize the final version of the budget bill as passed by Congress and exercise his veto power to excise the line items that clearly look and smell like pork.
Sa halip na magdulot ng kahihiyan, lalong nakatulong ang mga kongresistang naglilihis sa tunay na pangyayari sa 2019 national budget para maunawaan ng publiko ang krusada ni Senador Panfilo Lacson laban sa pork barrel.
Ayon kay Lacson, ang mga kongresistang nagsalita na ang mismong nagpaabot sa publiko kung gaano kaganid ang mga ito bunga na rin ng pagbaluktot sa mga usapin, makapagpasasa lamang sa pork barrel na itinago sa iba’t ibang ahensiya.
Matapos ang sunod-sunod na pagbubunyag ng mga nakatagong pork barrel sa iba’t ibang ahensiya mula sa deliberasyon sa Senado hanggang sa pagtalakay nito sa bicameral panel, nagpalusot at nag-imbento ng buwelta kay Lacson ang ilang kaalyado ni House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
The more they talk, the more they enlighten the public about the “evil pork” in the national budget, if unwittingly so.
On this note, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson thanked the “talking heads” of House Speaker Gloria Arroyo for contributing to the public’s knowledge on the issue.
“What Speaker GMA’s talking heads obviously do not realize is that they’re actually advancing my cause in educating the public more about the ‘evil pork’ in the national budget. I earnestly urge them to continue this public discourse. Many thanks to Cong. Castro and Bravo,” Lacson said in a post on his Twitter account Saturday night.
Malaki na ang ipinagkaiba ng ugali ni party list Rep. Anthony Bravo sa kasalukuyan mula noong 2016 bilang isang miyembro ng Mababang Kapulungan ng Kongreso.
Ito ang isiniwalat ni Senador Panfilo Lacson matapos na makisawsaw si Bravo sa usapin ng individual at institutional amendments sa pambansang gastusin para sa 2019.
Ayon kay Lacson, noong una niyang makadaupang-palad ang naturang kinatawan ay hangang-hanga siya sa pananalita nito.
“First time I met Cong. Anthony Bravo in 2016, he came across as genuine, sincere and credible. I normally am a good judge of character, but looks and first instance demeanor can be deceiving sometimes,” dismayadong pahayag ni Lacson sa kanyang Twitter account.
Instead of making miserably inadequate and baseless accusations, congressman Anthony Bravo should make public his amendments to the proposed national budget for 2019.
Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson hurled this challenge after he debunked Bravo’s claims that he inserted so-called secret amendments in the budget.
“Mr. Congressman, I already made public all my amendments in the 2019 national budget. Can you do the same?” Lacson said in a post on his Twitter account on Saturday.
Lacson pointed out he has always submitted his amendments to the budget bill in official written form to the chairperson of the Senate finance committee, because these are backed by proper planning and scrutiny.
“Ever since, I submit to the chair of the Senate Committee on Finance in official written form all my amendments to the annual budget bill for one very simple reason: I have nothing to hide since they are all institutional. In fact, I take pride that my amendments benefit no one else but the agencies concerned,” he said.
Citing the need for transparency, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson has made public the details of the institutional amendments he proposed in the P3.7-trillion national budget for 2019.
Lacson expressed hope other proponents of amendments to the budget will do the same, to remove speculations that the bicameral conference committee is a venue for “horse trading” and compromises among legislators.
“In the spirit of transparency, I instructed my staff to make public all my amendments in the 2019 national budget. I hope all proponents will do the same to remove all suspicions that the bicameral conference is a venue for sneaky horse trading among legislators,” he said in a post on his Twitter account.