Atienza chides Lacson for warning against possible return of ‘pork barrel’
Updated (8:19 .m.)
House Deputy Minority Leader and Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza chided Senator Panfilo Lacson on Tuesday for warning against a possible return of the “happy pork barrel days” under Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s leadership.
Atienza said many senators have benefited from pork barrel or the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), which the Supreme Court had declared as unconstitutional in 2013.
“I hope Sen. Lacson was just misquoted, otherwise I would advise him to look around the Senate because there are many out there who benefited from their “pork” through Napoles who are still around and even running for re-election,” he said in a statement, referring to alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles.
Atienza insisted that “there is no pork in the House of Representatives” and that they “will abide by” the SC ruling.
Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. backed Atienza’s statement saying “the leadership of the House will be observant of the SC ruling most especially regarding lump sum funds and the role of legislators in the budgetary authorization.”
“The process we will observe will be no different from the process adopted by the Senate,” he added.
Earlier in the day, Lacson said that if left unchecked, “we will be back to the happy pork barrel days of legislators.”
Lacson also said he expects “massive mangling” of the National Expenditure Program under Arroyo’s watch, despite her assurance that all lawmakers, ally or not, would receive congressional allocations. /ee
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