(SEPTEMBER 11, 2019) – It only took less than 10 minutes for the Senate finance subcommittee to pass the P8.2-billion 2020 budget of the Office of the President (OP) on Wednesday.
Senator Bong Go, President Rodrigo Duterte’s former assistant, led the subcommittee hearing, along with known Duterte allies Senators Francis Tolentino and Bato de la Rosa.
Before starting deliberations, Go assured that the procedure will be followed and that checks and balances will be observed in the deliberations.
“Familiar faces but at the opposite sides na tayo ngayon, but it doesn’t mean na I will not scrutinize you all, kasi maraming nakikinig dito,” Go said.
Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea presented the budget in the hearing, which is 21 percent higher than last year’s P6.8 billion.
Meanwhile, officials from the Presidential Management Staff (PMS) asked for an additional P52.9 million for the budget next fiscal year, to cover personnel sevices or salaries of employees under the office, capital outlays and maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE).
PMS had a P654 million funding in the version submitted by the Department of Budget and Management.
De la Rosa found nothing wrong with the agency’s budget, which prompted Go to approve the proposed budget of PMS.
“I would like to manifest na wala akong problema riyan. Ayos. So far, so good,” De la Rosa said. (Randell Ritumalta/JMF)