Cayetano: Cost review on Senate building backed by official reports

Cayetano: Cost review on Senate building backed by official reports

/ 02:59 PM June 12, 2024

BILLION-PESO PROJECT The newSenate building being built in Taguig as of July last year based on a photo posted by the Department of PublicWorks and Highways (DPWH) on its Facebook page. —PHOTO FROMDPWH senate building cayetano

BILLION-PESO PROJECT The new Senate building being built in Taguig as of July last year based on a photo posted by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) on its Facebook page. —PHOTO FROM DPWH

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano said the move to halt the construction of the New Senate Building (NSB) in Taguig pending a review of skyrocketing costs is backed by official reports and documents, not mere speculations.

“Hindi po ito bulong bulong o haka-haka, lahat po ito ay official, mga reports, mga documents — but voluminous po. Napakarami. Kaya we are getting through and we are sorting through it,” said Cayetano in a Facebook live on Wednesday where he addressed concerns about NSB.


(These are not mere murmurs or speculation; it’s all based on official reports and documents — but they are voluminous. So many. So we are getting through and sorting through it.)


Cayetano presently leads the Senate committee on accounts, which oversees the Senate’s budget, expenses, audit, and other fiscal activities.

He was also the one who informed newly-instated Senate President Chiz Escudero about an apparent “dramatic increase” of the construction cost for NSB from an initial budget of P8 billion to a projected P23.3 billion.

“Ang nag-review po nito ay nasa Secretariat ng Senate, nasa staff ko, nasa staff ng committee accounts and sila po ang namamahala. Yung iba po sa kanila, very, very capable,” Cayetano emphasized.

(The ones who reviewed it are in the Secretariat of the Senate, part of my staff, and part of the staff of the accounts committee and they are in charge. The rest of them are very, very capable.)

Before Cayetano’s clarification, Senator Nancy Binay — Cayetano’s predecessor in the Senate committee — expressed her dismay over Escudero’s decision to halt NSB’s construction.

She said the Senate chief could have reached out and talked to her instead of relying on gossipmongers and individuals who only spread rumors.


READ: Nancy Binay hits gossip, fake news about new Senate building

Reason for delay

Cayetano, in the same Facebook live, likewise addressed fears that Escudero’s halt order and his panel’s decision to review NSB would cause a delay to the completion of the Senate’s new home.

According to him, it is not the Senate chief’s decision nor the committee’s doing that will cause any delay at this point.

“Let me clarify ulit ‘yan — ‘yung sinasabi sa news na Phase 1 and Phase 2, hindi magko-cause ng delays ‘yan kasi tuloy-tuloy sila. In fact, may delay na ‘yan at in fact, sila na nga ang nagsabi kung kailan earliest na matatapos. Sa report mismo, yung slow down na inutos ng Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), nandyan po ‘yan sa report,” said Cayetano.

(Let me clarify that again — what was said in the news regarding Phase 1 and Phase 2, it will not cause delays because it is continuous. In fact, there is already a delay, and they themselves said when is the earliest it will be finished. In the report itself, the slowdown ordered by the DPWH was there.)

Meanwhile, he reminded the public to set aside their judgments for now and not speculate.

He said his panel’s intention is to only review the implementation of NSB’s contracts, adding that they are “more than willing to listen to everyone.”

The NSB’s construction began in 2019 under then-Senate President Vicente Sotto III.

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READ: Escudero wants P23-billion new Senate building reviewed: Parang OA

TAGS: Cayetano, Senate

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