I take full responsibility for DAP, DBM chief says
MANILA - Following President Benigno Aquino III's refusal to accept his resignation, Budget Secretary has chosen to stay in his post.
In a statement released on Saturday, Abad said he tendered his resignation last Thursday amid the controversy surrounding the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), parts of which were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court (SC).
"This was not without thought or reflection. In the wake of the controversy surrounding the DAP-especially after the adverse Supreme Court ruling that declared parts of the program unconstitutional-it became clear to me that I must abide by the highest standards of accountability that we in the Aquino administration hold ourselves to," he said.
He said he takes full responsibility for his role in developing and implementing the DAP as well as the impact of the resulting controversy on the administration's governance agenda.
"It was therefore only fitting that I resign," he said.
However, Aquino on Friday stood by Abad and announced that he would not accept the budget secretary's resignation.
The President said Abad did nothing wrong in implementing the DAP, which he stressed helped to spur the country's economic growth.
According to Abad, he has chosen to defer to the President's "better judgment" and stay as secretary of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
He said he is determined to give justice to Aquino's confidence in him.
"Although I was wholly prepared to relinquish my post, I am grateful for the President's expression of his continuing trust and confidence in my leadership of the Department. I have thus chosen to defer to his better judgment and stay," he said.
"I am determined, as I have always been, to do justice to the President's faith in my integrity and competence," he added.
Abad also said the DBM will now carry out its responsibilities with "greater vigilance and meticulousness."
"I assure the people that we will proceed with a keener awareness of the standards against which our work will be measured, but also with a deeper appreciation of the great opportunities for reform ahead of us," Abad said.
Critics on Friday slammed Abad's resignation, saying it was insincere and scripted.
They said if Abad really wanted to let go of his post, he should have issued an irrevocable resignation instead.
The DAP first hit the headlines after Senator Jinggoy Estrada, one of the three senators now detained over the pork barrel scam, claimed that several senators received some P50 million to P100 million in DAP funds allegedly in exchange for voting to convict former Chief Justice Renato Corona.