House tackles P165.5-B DPWH budget for 2013By Karen Boncocan
MANILA, Philippines—The House committee on appropriations looked into the proposed budget on the Department of Public Works and Highways Thursday.
Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson was present to defend the P165.5-billion proposed allocation for the agency in 2013.
Stemming from the devastation wrought by torrential rains caused by the southwest monsoon, Singson said that he has asked Budget Secretary Abad whether a P5 billion from savings could be allocated for “immediate high impact projects for the recent ‘habagat’ flooding.” He said that he had to ask for separate funding for interventions for flooding problems since it was not included for the 2012 budget.
Massive floods spawned by rains intensified by the southwest monsoon, inundating a large portion of Metro Manila and nearby provinces, displacing thousands and killing 95 persons.
Singson said that the DPWH had an uncommitted P3 billion but this was not enough to resolve the flooding issue not only within the metropolis but also areas near the Laguna de Bay.
Abad told reporters in a text message that the P5 billion requested was something the DBM can accommodate and will be available this year.
The DPWH has completed a masterplan for the areas mentioned, Singson said, adding that a masterplan for areas near the Pampanga River basin was also being worked on.