Gov’t to use reenacted budget if House insists on amendments, warns Lacson
MANILA, Philippines — The government will have no choice but to use the reenacted budget until August if the House of Representatives insists to push its amendments on the 2019 General Appropriations Act.
This was the warning of Senator Panfilo Lacson on Sunday as he said that Senate President Vicente Sotto would not sign the enrolled bill if the House would insists its amendments.
“Talagang titigasan ng Senado na kung hindi yung napag-usapan sa bicameral conference ang pipirmahan as an enrolled bill, hindi pipirmahan ‘yun ni Senate President Sotto,” Lacson said in an interview over dzBB.
“All indications point to the country having a reenacted budget at least hanggang Agosto. So parang pinaghahandaan na namin na hanggang nandiyan si Speaker Arroyo, at kung titigasan nila yung kanilang ginawa na ginalaw nila yung napagkaisahan na sa bicameral conference, ay talagang hindi pipirma si Senate President,” he added.
Lacson earlier claimed that Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has allegedly directed the realignments of P25 million budget from the Department of Health (DOH) for her “favored” congressmen.
Citing Article VI, Section 26 of the Constitution, Lacson said amendments should not be done to a measure already approved on third and final reading.
The 17th Congress ratified the P3.757-trillion 2019 national budget last February after months of delay.
Lacson then warned the impending effects if the government would continue to use the reeneacted budget for the country.
“Ang sinasabi niya rito, ang impact kung reenacted budget, nasa P500 million a day ang negative effect sa ating ekonomiya,” Lacson said.
“So kinokonsidera din namin yun pero ang bottom line, hindi talaga kami bibigay, na pipirma yung Senate President na mapapahamak siya,” he added.
House appropriations committee chairman Rolando Andaya meanwhile said that senators are free to tell the President which part of the proposed national budget to veto if they feel that it is “constitutionally-infirm and legally-flawed.” /je
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.