Palace says Arroyo should explain about huge insertions in 2019 proposed budget
Malacanang said on Thursday Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has to explain the supposed P2.4 billion allocation for projects in her district in Pampanga in the proposed 2019 budget.
"I think so, given the amount involved, given the reaction of people like you. We citizens also would like explanation," Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a press briefing when asked if Arroyo should explain the realignments in the P3.757-trillion budget for next year.
"I think we should ask the Speaker why the allocation is that large as compared to others," he added.
Senator Panfilo Lacson has said at the House of Representatives, there were alterations made in the National Expenditure Program for 2019.
Lacson accused House members have pork barrel insertions despite the Supreme Court ruling declaring the unconstitutionality of the Priority Development Assistance Fund in 2013.
He noted that Arroyo's second district in Pampanga would receive P2.4 billion, while a district in Camarines Sur would get P1.9 billion.
House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya came from Camarines Sur. But Lacson did not mention the district in the Bicol province, which supposedly would receive P1.9 billion.
Panelo reminded Duterte has the power to veto any portion of the proposed budget when he signs it into law.
But he did not say if Duterte would veto such insertions made in the House. Celerina Monte/DMS