Robredo: How were COVID-19 funds spent?

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 25 2020 12:28 PM | Updated as of Jun 25 2020 12:40 PM

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MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte's administration should release a detailed breakdown of how it spent hundreds of billions of pesos meant to contain the coronavirus pandemic, Vice President Leni Robredo said Thursday. 

A government website that details the fund allocation has "many blanks" and "not enough information," Robredo said on the same day of the expiration of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act that gave Duterte additional powers to address the pandemic, including the realignment of the 2020 national budget. 

"For the past several hindi lang (not just) days, but weeks, I've been looking for documents online on the report of how the Bayanihan Heal as One funds were spent -- Hindi kumpleto (it's incomplete)," the Vice President told ANC. 

Robredo said she wanted Duterte's weekly report to answer: "Where are we in our targets? Number 2, how did we spend the special funds that were given to the national government?"

"Iyong interesting d'yan (what's interesting there is), how much was allocated to mass testing, how much was allocated for contact tracing," Robredo said. 

"Before we even talk of more special powers, iyong pinaka-kailangan siguro (perhaps what is most necessary) is to render a complete report of what happened in the last few months," she added. 

The Philippines has spent P355 billion for its response to the coronavirus pandemic. Of this amount, P247.52 billion came from pooled savings while P96.7 billion came from unprogrammed appropriations, Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado said Wednesday. 

The Department of Finance last week said the government planned to raise up to P400 billion from borrowings to help fund the country's recovery from the pandemic.

— With a report from Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News