Palace asked to answer anti-DAP petitioners’ motion
MANILA, Philippines—The Supreme Court has asked the Office of the President to respond to the appeal filed by several petitioners against the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) where several acts have been declared unconstitutional.
In a resolution, the high court gave the Office of the President 10 days to answer the motion for reconsideration filed by petitioners led by former Manila councilor Greco Belgica.
The petitioners’ motion asked the high court to issue a definitive ruling on the power of the President to augment funds to cover a deficit in the program for which public funds had been earmarked under the annual appropriations law.
Belgica’s group was not satisfied with the high court’s ruling that declared certain acts in the DAP unconstitutional. These are: withdrawal of unobligated allotments from implementing agencies and their use as savings prior to end of fiscal year; cross-border transfers of savings of the executive to augment funds of agencies outside the department; and funding of projects, activities and programs not covered by the General Appropriations Act.
Belgica said the high court failed to declare that “augmentations can only be made to cover deficient appropriation items up to the extent of the maximum recommendation of the President for the PAPs subject of the augmentation.”
He said that Aquino cannot augment funds for PAPs in the GAA through DAP beyond what he had originally recommended to Congress.
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