Magsaysay to DBM: Where’s my pork?By Karen Boncocan
MANILA, Philippines — Zambales Representative Milagros “Mitos” Magsaysay on Thursday pressed the Department of Budget and Management for a reason on why her pork barrel was being withheld and at one point questioned the presence of a quorum on the last day of deliberations on the proposed P2.006 trillion national budget.
The deputy minority leader grilled newly confirmed Transportation and Communications chief Joseph Emilio Abaya who sponsored the DBM funding at the plenary, saying that it was the constituents of lawmakers who do not receive their priority development assistance fund (PDAF) who would suffer.
She maintained that Abaya’s reason of political realities and the discretion of the executive branch were “too vague.”
“I can’t use that to explain that to my constituents why my PDAF has not been released,” said Magsaysay who suggested that the budget be amended to no longer contain funding for districts of lawmakers who do not receive their pork barrel.
But Abaya maintained that he would not amend the proposed P2.006 trillion national budget.
Seemingly dissatisfied with the responses given to her query, the Zambales lawmaker moved to question the quorum after which session was suspended.
When session resumed it was House minority leader Danilo Suarez who spoke on behalf of Magsaysay who he said was reconsidering her motion questioning the quorum. While waiting for her decision, the session moved to deliberate the budget proposed for the Department of Energy.
The House of Representatives is expected to approve the 2013 budget tonight.