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Drilon airs view on restoration of P75 B ‘pork’

/ 08:26 PM February 11, 2019

ILOILO CITY–Sen. Franklin Drilon on Monday said the restoration of P75 billion in’ pork’ to the proposed 2019 budget can only be possible if there are savings at the end of the year.

Drilon told the INQUIRER at the sidelines of the opening of the Museum of Philippine Economic History here that under present rules, funds can only be reallocated to a project if there are savings.

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Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. earlier accused Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles of maneuvering for the restoration of the P75 billion in the P3.8-billion national budget.

“But the savings are determined at the end of the year,” he said.

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“I do not know how that can be done. They might be referring to the reinstatement of the projects which were supposed to be funded by the P75 billion. They can do that by not releasing the amounts pertaining to certain projects and putting it in the project which was part of the P75 billion which was removed. But they can only do that if some of the project will not be executed and the savings will result at the end of the year,” Drilon, a former senate president and executive secretary said.

Drilon voted against the approval of the budget.

“I voted against it because basically I saw a grave abuse of discretion on the part of the legislators in nominating projects in the budget. There was really an abusive manner in which amendments were made,” he said.

The budget was approved last Friday after legislators agreed to channel the P75 billion to public works projects that will be identified by the legislators. / gsg

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