A huge budget for ayuda, perpetuating people mendicancy

WHAT MATTERS MOST - Josephus Jimenez - The Freeman

The P5.768 trillion National Budget for 2024 is another ambitious financial plan to spend money that will be mostly sourced from foreign and domestic borrowings. The administration, for the nth time, is burdening the future generations of servicing the already humongous national debt. This is also a budget full of dole-outs that do not assure value adding expenditures nor generate returns for such ambitious, even reckless spending.

And since this budget has been prepared by traditional politicians, the professional economic team in the Cabinet will carry the heavy responsibility to generate funding for such a huge, huge financial allocations. The press release issued last December 19 by the House of Representatives proudly highlights the glaring fact that this national budget includes no less than P500 billion or half a trillion money for ayuda, the Filipino word for dole-outs. This comprises almost ten percent of the total budget, money to be given away to people who will not be required to render productive work. This is a plain perpetuation of mendicancy, rewarding the unproductive people with money taken from the heavy taxes exacted from the working class. Punishing those who work and rewarding the lazy ones.

This Philippine national budget another populist financial planning, recklessly designed to make the politicians look good to the people, at the expense of the taxpayers, especially that next year is a midterm election year. The Speaker of the House, a favorite first cousin to the president, and much drumbeated as the 2028 presidential bet of the administration, proudly stressed in the House Press Release: "For the first time, under the administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, we are allocating half a trillion pesos, or about nine percent of the national budget as assistance to the poor and households with insufficient income" This could only refer to the 4Ps, which is the government's template for perpetuating mendicancy, instead of investing in job and income -generating programs and projects.

This government prides itself in endlessly "giving fish instead of teaching the people how to fish." This then is not a developmental budget because instead of building the capabilities of the human capital to create values and enlarge our GDP, the government prefers to make the people forever dependent on ayuda without becoming productive. This half a trillion pesos could have been better spent in adding more money to DOLE's better program called TUPAD, which is designed to make displaced workers work and earn. The TUPAD way is developmental and more respectful of the dignity of the workers. They would be earning money by exerting efforts at community work and not just accepting dole-outs.

All the trapos in the House and in the Senate are making the people perpetual recipients of money they do not work for. This is purely "pa-pogi" by trapos and does not contribute to value formation and character building of the Filipinos. This is also a big demotivator to the taxpayers who are carrying heavy burdens of taxation only to see that their tax money is being lavishly given away to people who spend their days drinking and gambling. The recipients of dole-outs just gamble their ayuda or spend them for vices and non-productive practices and goods. And the Speaker of the House, the fourth highest official of the land is proud of this kind of populist government practice.

The barangay and municipal officials down the government structures are reported to be using the ayuda for partisan political purposes. The truly poor and indigent people are excluded because they are not close to nor politically aligned with the petty trapos in the outlying areas.

Those who are close to the local powers-that-be are favored in the distribution of the ayuda. Therefore, this budget is a political tool to bribe the masses into supporting the administration and is thus another tool of oppression and exploitation.

It is high time that the people should wake up and realize how the politicians in this country are frying them with their own lard.

vuukle comment


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with