MANILA - Sen. Richard Gordon on Wednesday criticized next year's P4.50 trillion national spending plan as a "bad-get."
Congress on Tuesday adjourned deliberations on the General Appropriations Act in 20 minutes after allowing the House Committee on Appropriations and the Senate Committee on Finance chairpersons to iron out amendments in the spending bill, according to the Office of Sen. Sonny Angara.
"I think we should spell the budget ‘bad-get.’ Di naman umaabot ang budget sa tao halos eh. I don’t know whether it really affects our country, umaabot ‘yung 4Ps, I admit that pero madaming umaangal, maraming di nabibigyan, maraming corruption. Nakikita mo pina-park ang pera…pag nahuli ibabalik nila," Gordon told ANC's Headstart.
(The budget almost never get to the people. I don’t know whether it really affects our country, the 4Ps is distributed, I admit that but there are many complaints, corruption. You can see funds being parked...then they say they will return it when they're caught.)
"Napakababa ng absorption rate (The absorption rate is too low). They ask us for money and they don’t spend it."
Gordon said budget for COVID-19 vaccine and better construction for schools that also serve as evacuation centers must be prioritized after they were destroyed by a series of typhoons that hit Luzon beginning October.
"We’re rushing like everybody else for the vaccine but we better be sure what we’re going to get is the right vaccine," he said.
"I would put my money into stronger schools that would not be blown away in typhoon-devastated areas," the Philippine Red Cross chairman said.
He added: "What are we prioritizing? The anti-insurgency campaign? Gaano katagal na ba yan? Magmula nang pinanganak tayo, meron nang Hukbalahap, NPA... Lahat ng intelligence fund nand'yan na. Talagang dapat prioritize mo."
(How long has it been there? Since we were born there's been the Hukbalahap, NPA. All intelligence funds were given. You should prioritize.)