NGOs must not get pork barrel funds, senators say
More News from Maila Ager
More News from INQUIRER.net
MANILA, Philippines—At least two senators now want to stop the use of legislators’ “pork barrel for non-government organizations (NGOs) amid allegations they were being used as dummies.
“Whether it’s strict or not, I would like to remove the funding for NGOs and other trainings that can’t be monitored and accounted for,” Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero said in a radio interview on Friday.
Escudero , who now heads the Senate committee on finance, said the lawmakers’ priority development assistance fund (PDAF) known as “pork barrel” should be spent to projects or programs that would benefit the country, especially the poor.
And to ensure transparency, he said, the PDAF of all members of the House of Representatives and the Senate must be published.
“Put your money where your mouth is. You should be proud of it because you’re able to help your countrymen. We should not it and it’s not a confidential document,” he said.
Senator Ralph Recto, in a separate radio interview, agreed there should be strict monitoring of how the pork barrel is being spent.
“I agree. To be honest, it should not be released to an NGO,” Recto said.
“These foundations, NGOs are advocacy groups. They help on their own in the local communities. But they should not dip their hands on the government funds,” he said.
Recto said most of his pork barrel funds were being used for infrastructures such as roads which would benefit more people.
He said he also used his funds for government hospitals like the Philippine Heart Center, Philippine General Hospital, Kidney Center, regional hospitals and scholarships.
“I don’t release any fund to NGOs,” Recto said.
Neophyte Senator Grace Poe, in a forum at the Senate Thursday, also saw the need for a more stringent screening of NGOs that would be given funds by lawmakers.
Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94