House defers NSC, NICA 2021 budget deliberations
MANILA, Philippines — The House of Representatives on Tuesday evening deferred the plenary deliberations on the budget of the National Security Council (NSC) and the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) as they failed to provide the national peace framework being asked by Makabayan bloc lawmakers.
The move to defer the budget deliberations was prompted by Gabriela party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas after she quizzed Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon, who is defending the agencies’ budget, about the national peace framework provided under Executive Order No. 70.
Brosas said the Makabayan bloc had asked the agencies for the national peace framework in 2019, but they still had not received a copy.
“Up to now, we have not received even the local one that you were talking about. We don’t have a copy of that,” Brosas said.
She then asked Biazon whether it was the policy of the NSC and NICA to red-tag members of the Makabayan bloc and to put up posters against them.
Biazon said it was not the policy of the agencies to engage in such activities.
Brosas then moved to defer the budget deliberations of the agencies.
She then made some remarks about Secretary Hermogenes Espero Jr., the national security adviser.
“Secretary Esperon is quick in making baseless and dangerous accusations against the Makabayan bloc. Secretary Esperon is quick in defending Chinese vessels and military construction in the West Philippine Sea. Secretary Esperon is quick in defending the construction of the towers of Dito Telecommunity inside military camps,” she said.
“But this simple thing that we’re asking, this national peace framework, he could not give up to now. With this, Mr. Speaker, I move to defer the budget deliberations of the NSC and NICA,” Brosas added.
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