Lacson said leaders of the House of Representatives inserted the lump sum provisions at the last minute before Congress ratified the proposed national budget last week.
Ping Lacson Staff/Release, File
Lacson hits ‘vague’ provisions in budget projects in 2020 budget
Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star) - December 16, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The proposed P4.1-trillion General Appropriations Bill (GAB) that President Duterte is set to sign into law is riddled with billions of pesos in vague provisions that are susceptible to corruption, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said yesterday.

Lacson said leaders of the House of Representatives inserted the lump sum provisions at the last minute before Congress ratified the proposed national budget last week.

 “It’s up to the President if he believes that these (provisions) are pork that needs to be removed,” he told DZBB.

He expressed optimism that Davao City Rep. Isidro Ungab, chairman of the House appropriations committee, would share his view.

The senator explained that the lump sums were prone to corruption as the provisions lack details, citing the case of a P22-million allocation for “construction works” in Candaba, Pampanga. “Where in Candaba?” he asked.

There is also a P30-million appropriation for the construction and widening of roads in Tumauini, Isabela and a P50-million for asphalt overlay for a city, which he did not identify. Both items lacked details, like the specific location of the projects, he said.

Lacson also described as highly questionable the P3.179-billion amendment for flood control projects in many parts of the country.

 "What’s surprising is that eight of these flood control projects are all allocated P60 million each in different locations. Are the rivers in these areas exactly alike?” the senator said.

CORRUPTION PANFILO LACSON
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