Nov. 3, 2010
Pagbabago! People’s Movement for Change hit President Benigno Aquino III for allowing Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to hog P2.2 billion funds in infrastructure projects for her congressional district in Pampanga.
“Pres. Aquino in the past lambasted Mrs. Gloria Arroyo’s lathering of funds for Pampanga. But now, he is simply letting her off the hook. Aquino’s pronouncements are turning out to be empty rhetoric,” said Fr. Joe Dizon, Spokesperson of Pagbabago!
In his State of the Nation Address, Pnoy slammed the P108 million pesos Calamity Fund allocated for Pampanga, of which P105 million went to a single district, and its distribution during the electoral campaign period. In his 100 Days Accomplishment Report, Aquino again raised the issue of negotiated contracts and overspending by the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Pagbabago! also criticized Malacañang for echoing the Arroyo camp’s justification of the allocation, citing how parts of it are foreign loan agreements, and purportedly untouchable. “How can Pnoy make Arroyo accountable for multibillion-peso plunder cases on various anomalous projects in the past when he doesn’t use the Budget Department and the pro-Pnoy majority in Congress on the simple question of realigning public funds? May we remind Pnoy that Gloria still needs to be held accountable for raking it in by abusing her presidential powers then. She should not be allowed to get her dirty hands on more taxpayer’s money,” added Fr. Dizon.
Pagbabago also supported calls of Senator Guingona III for a transparent bicameral process on national budget to flush out such glaring anomalies. (Bulatlat.com)