‘Horror roll’: Lacson flags ‘disparity’ in infra allocations among congressional districts
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Panfilo Lacson on Wednesday flagged the disparity in the proposed infrastructure allocations among congressional districts.
Lacson said he found that an urban district in Davao, under the House-approved 2021 General Appropriations Bill, has an appropriation amounting to P15.351 billion.
“This is just to point out the disparity in the distribution of the budget,” he said during the Senate plenary debates on the proposed P4.5-trillion national budget for 2021.
Further, Lacson said that one district in Albay got a P7.5-billion appropriation, one district in Benguet was allocated P7.9 billion while P3.75 billion was appropriated for one district in Abra.
“Yun ang honor roll. Horror roll… I just want to point that out, bakit ganun ang disparity? What’s in those districts that would merit [those appropriations]?” he said.
Lacson pointed out that proposed allocations for several congressional districts did not even exceed P1 billion.
“May districts na P82 million may P42 million pa,” he said.
“Bakit ganoon?” he added.
He also raised concerns on whether the districts in the “horror roll” would be able to implement billions-worth of projects.
“The absorptive capacity. Kasi kung sa isang district ‘yan babagsak, I cannot see how that particular engineering district could implement P15.351 billion of infrastructure projects,” he said.
Senate President Vicente Sotto III said that what Lacson had disclosed was “something new” to him.
“Usually kasi sa pinagdaanan kong mga budgets, yung mga districts, ‘di masyadong nagkakalayo ang amounts ng funding nila, especially sa DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways),” Sotto told reporters in an online interview.
“Bago sa akin ito na mayroong ilang district na saksakan ng lalaki ang amount,” he added.
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