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[VIDEO]: Cabinet meeting for the 2023 national budget
Rightsizing the 2023 Budget
Press secretary Atty. Trixie Angeles-Cruz said that the recent cabinet meeting of the Marcos administration tackles the 2023 national budget. Education and rightsizing are the main priorities. Few suggestions were made to make it ready for submission by the following week.
Education, health, agriculture, social safety nets, and infrastructure are the top 5 priorities for the 2023 budget. Education remains the highest for the fund’s allocation as mandated in the constitution. The aim of the senate is to make the general appropriations bill ready for Jan 1, 2023, said Senator Sonny Angara.
President Bongbong Marcos meets with his cabinet to hear the proposal of the department of budget and management. This allows congress to scrutinize the plan for rightsizing. The intention is to avoid allocating proportions of the funds to the not-so-needed areas. Therefore, there were some questionings for fine-tuning. The department’s submission target is right on time for Congress to do its part.
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[VIDEO]: The effect of the withdrawn US support to the PNP
Budget for Training and Equipment
The PNP’s budget for training and equipment still came from the previous Duterte administration. So, the withdrawal of the US support for the drug war, cyber war, and intelligence is not a great loss. However, the police would like to know the American lawmaker’s basis on their halted promise.
Human Rights Violations
The PNP is open to talks with the Americans about the alleged human rights violations. The reason for the US to discontinue the budget allocated for their operations. As far as they are concerned, police officers who were guilty of the drug war crimes are already in jail or kicked out of service.
The basis for the Withdrawal
PNP spokesperson Colonel Jean Fajardo is sad about the US’s budget withdrawal. Although this will not cripple the PNP, the police force seeks an explanation of America’s basis for such action. Having limited resources would prohibit the full potential of uniformed men and women.
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[VIDEO]: US 2nd Gentleman to lead delegation for Marcos inauguration
The Budget Deputy Director is in the US Delegation
White House said that United States Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff will lead the US delegation. It includes Filipino-American Congressman Bobby Scott of Virginia and Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director Nani Coloretti.
Alliance to Continue
Incoming President Bongbong Marcos’ independent policy does not allow other countries to influence internal decision-making processes when it comes to foreign affairs. Although PBBM vows to continue the alliance with America. some Filipinos are skeptical about the friendship between both countries. Given their treatment of the Marcos family in 1986. That has nothing to do with the US AID budget that his late father refused to accept. Thus, American military bases went somewhere else due to their refusal to pay rent.
Russia’s Offer on Oil
The Russian ambassador just visited PBBM and offered to supply the country with oil. The new President is open to all deals. But to take it could create some indifferences with other US allies. However, when it comes to the welfare of the people, most Filipinos trust that PBBM will make the right move. He’s planning to implement the old strategy of his father. That is to get credit from suppliers.
Imee Marcos: The unprogrammed budgets will go to the agencies with financial anomalies that must be protected.
DOH and Philhealth Budget Anomalies
Sources of unplanned budgets are the DOTRr, DPWH, and other projects that can’t be done yet due to some circumstances. Lawmakers have a hard time balancing the redirection because of the anomalies at the DOH and Philhealth amidst the Pandemic. Earlier, Senator Imee Marcos urges the Secretary of Finance, Carlos Dominguez to take a loan from the World Bank. The country’s privilege of almost zero interest rate still stands until at present since the late President Ferdinand Marcos’ time.
Senator Marcos vs. Secretary Dominguez
YouTube Video by ANC 24/7
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez disputes Masagana 99 success. He said that he was the one who clears that up. Domingues insists that the country’s World Bank privilege is due to proper financial management. That is why he does not want to borrow more money despite the almost zero interest rate from the World Bank to help people due to the pandemic. Marcos said that no bank would lend to countries with no money. However, the international bank was set up to help rebuild nations. The Philippines is still a third world country with huge potentials. Besides, the favorable interest rate can only mean that the country’s gold deposits are indeed existent. We can avail of the debt moratorium to aid the citizens.
The World Bank Gold Deposits
YouTube Video by PweDelie TV
The Philippines is thought to be the land of Ophir. History dictates that most of the world’s gold is in the country. There are legal documentations that they are consolidated in trust funds under the Marcos foundation. His last will and testament detail the proceeding that they are for the welfare of humanity. The recipients are the Filipino people. Is Senator Marcos’s confidence when it comes to the World Bank derives from this? By the way, at the end of the vaccine purchasing struggle, the initial doses are reported to be financed by the World Bank and ADB.
In an interview with Ogie Diaz, the presumptive Vice President explains how she operates the OVP with a limited budget. She said that she relies on donations. Leni Robredo does not accept cash. They have an agency that handles it for transparency. At this point, she can’t decide to run for President unless her party supports her.
The Protest Filed by the Marcoses?
Bongbong Marcos’ electoral protest against her still awaits ruling from the Supreme Court. Not the whole Marcos clan. But one Marcos VP candidate in 2016. She has not paid the whole counter protest fee of 15 Million yet. She lacks 7.5 million for it. Her supporters were able to raise the amount but the SC rejects it. So, they use the amount in a housing project in Marawi.
Robredo said that she cannot imagine having another man other than her husband. She is only looking forward to be a grandmother. But it seems that her daughters do not have plans yet. This is contrary to the President’s reminder that if she runs for President, he will divulge where she goes home at night.
Senator Imee Marcos’interview with Oscar Pasaporte on ‘Padayon Pilipino’ DYKC Radio Ronda Cebu
Not Wno’s First but the Budget
Senator Imee Marcos said that it is safe to take the Coronavirus vaccine by the time it reaches the Philippines. Only 20% of the remaining products are available for Asia. The question is the budget. 80% are already bought by rich countries. “We can buy AstraZeneca’s vaccine at only US$2.50 per dose, half the price announced by government negotiators. The Swedish pharmaceutical firm and Oxford University already decided to sell their vaccine at cost and for as long as needed by less developed countries,” Senator Imee Marcos said.
Marcos issued the statement after the government, local corporate donors, and AstraZeneca signed a purchase agreement to acquire 2.6 million doses of the vaccine for about Php600 million, or about $5 per dose. Marcos added that subsequent purchases of the same vaccine should cost less because the Philippines is also among the 92 low and lower-middle income countries that will benefit from international donor-funded vaccines under the global initiative known as the COVAX Advance Market Commitment facility.
Immediate Funds Needed
The challenge among Senators now is not who’s taking it first. But to get enough budget for the majority of the population. The frontliners, vulnerable communities, and those who cannot afford to buy must be under government subsidy. The rest should purchase their vaccine of choice. Senators are basically not the priority but they can serve as examples to give confidence to the people. Besides, by the time they arrive in the Phiippines, the first world countries are already immune. So, that should assure Filipinos that the vaccines are safe.
Senator Imee Marcos: Slash Budget from DPWH Projects
Finding Stale Projects
Senator Imee Marcos should know when it comes to the Build, Build, Build Budget. She knows that there are projects that are not possible yet because of the impossibility of the right of way and other concerns. It made sense to gather all these up first to prioritize buying more Coronavirus vaccines. DPWH needs to act on this proactively.
Senator Imee Marcos said that it is imperative to set a global price ceiling.This is to help less developed countries access COVID-19 vaccines. She also pointed out that the national government should be able to secure reservations. That way, it is handy to sort out the priority list for the vaccination.
Budget Sourcing Causes Delay
It is crucial for the Philippines to secure the budget immediately. Reservations must be made at the soonest possible time. Various countries scramble to buy the available stock as they are made available. Money talks in this instance because life is at stake.
YouTube video by Imee Marcos Senator Imee Marcos talks about Covid-19, VFA and CITIRA
The Tripple Whammy
Senator Imee Marcos talks to Senate media on March 9, 2020 about a “Triple Whammy” that she says will affect the country’s economy this year — Covid-19, VFA and CITIRA.
No Supplemental Budget History
Senator Marcos, chair of the Senate economic affairs committee, is not optimistic about President Duterte’s approval on the DOH’s 2B supplemental budget. She discloses it after his non-approval of any supplemental budget since he took over Malacanang in 2016. Aside from the COVID-19 threat, other “whammies” are also at stake. The negative economic effect of the unilateral abrogation of the 21-year-old Philippines-United States Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA)is real. The African swine fever epidemic that might decimate the country’s pork production by half is another. Plus the impending blacklisting of the Philippines because of money laundering by “tourists” or “businessmen” of billions of pesos of undeclared foreign currency inflows through the airports is ongoing.
No Sense of Urgency in the DOH
A testimony before her committee that the DOH, despite its billions of pesos in its annual budget, only has 2,000 testing kits annoys her. Although the COVID crisis began late last year, no one from the DOH prepares for it. Marcos said they should now plan an epidemic situation as the Senate itself is on lockdown.
President Rodrigo Du30 threatened to make COA members fall down the stairs on an interagency briefing of Typhoon Ompong. He made this joke after he learned from Governor Imee Marcos about COA not allowing cash advances for emergencies. This was supposed to be for the budget on purchasing building materials for the victims of the disaster.
President Du30 came hard on the Commission on Audit for their restriction on government spending for the disaster. He is going as far as to say that COA employees should be pushed down the stairs.
The Governor can only Agree
With the COA only allowing cash advances for food up to Php 15,000, Imee Marcos gets exasperated. Du30 also criticizes the COA with their circulars that he could care less about.
The Budget is Needed for Emergency
COA defends that not all can be cash advanced, and also this occurring over the weekend makes things too difficult. However, Du30 criticizes the circulars further. He sees the circulars as cockeyed, with some people from the government getting to jail because of it while others get away scot-free also because of it. It seems it all depends on how they swing the legal arguments.
Cash Advance Restriction is Not a Law
With Ompong smashing through northern Luzon, which people describe as the strongest storm to hit the country for the year, the president comments on the uselessness of the circulars. He says that unless they are made into law the circulars are useless.
Typhoon Ompong Damages in Ilocos Norte
Ilocos Norte suffers a big loss after the Typhoon. The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council assesses the damage at around Php 2.3 billion. With agriculture damages amounting to Php 1.9 billion and damages in infrastructure amounting to Php 440 million. The COA may deserve some respect because they are just doing their job. However, they should put their attitude on a check when dealing with emergency disasters. They too must be prepared when cash is needed badly for the victims’ relief efforts.
Leni Robredo’s biggest excuse is having no budget for the projects that need the attention of the Office of the Vice President right now. This is allegedly why all she could do when she was HUDCC Chair was to report the problem but nothing could be done.
Youtube video by; Elena Grace Flores
[VIDEO]: Leni Robredo knows about the various problems in the housing sector and others but reiterates that the Office of the Vice President has no budget for projects.
Just Reported Housing Problems
Robredo complained that she has reported many problems already as far as the HUDCC or housing for the poor is concerned but no actions were taken. Perhaps, the Vice President did not realize that her job is to offer solutions to the problems and not just report them.
More Hindrances to do VP Work
She also mentioned that there are many hindrances now to do her work because there are various destructions. She may be referring to Marcos’ electoral protests against her and the continuing impeachment complaints.
Forces Behind the President
The Vice president acknowledges that there are forces behind the president that trigger fights between her and PDu30. This she said is due to their own personal interests and nothing to do with her various disagreements with him.
No Budget for Projects
Former Vice President Jejomar Binay leaves ₱500 million budget for Robredo. The Office of the Vice President (OVP) during Binay’s last year as VP has spent less than 20 percent of its budget for 2016. What he left is enough for her to spend within the remaining six months of that year. How much is not enough for the OVP’s yearly budget? What should she do if the department has no budget for her projects? Whine? She should learn from Binay how to raise funds because she has proven that nothing can be stolen from the government. The greatness of a leader can be measured on how he or she can provide for his or her constituents through private-public cooperative efforts. After all, she spent half a billion pesos to make herself win questionably.