PB dad: Capitol should continue with doleouts
DESPITE its political nature, doleouts should be given to the barangays and towns of Cebu province since most of them are dependent on the Capitol and even on the national government.
“I just hope that the next governor or whoever is the sitting governor should continue distributing financial assistance to the barangays because this is really helping them,” Provincial Board (PB) Member Ribomafil Holganza said.
Holganza, president of the Provincial Federation of the Association of Barangays Councils (ABC) who sits as an ex-officio PB member, said the distribution of financial aid should continue even with the suspension of Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia.
“I also hoped that more barangays will be covered because even in my barangay (in Bantayan), has not received any amount yet,” he said.
Holganza said it was only last year that Garcia gave a uniform amount for the barangays at P200,000 for day care centers and P100,000 for barangay halls renovation or construction.
“Although, the amount is too small for construction of a building, maybe renovation ra gyud,” said Holganza, who became the federation president since 2009.
Budget Officer Emme Gingoyon said the funds given to the barangays for the renovation or construction of barangay halls, health centers, or day care centers form part of the item called “Subsidy to Local Government Units.”
Gingoyon said he cannot recall the exact amount but said this is a “huge” bulk item under the governor’s office.
Cebu Daily News checked records and found an item in the 2011 expenses called “subsidy to Local Government Units” pegged at least P303.2 million.
Gingoyon said the item is “discretionary” in nature which means that Garcia can distribute the amount to LGUs how she wanted it distributed.
“You can describe the item that way as discretionary in that it’s up to the governor which town and barangay to give it to and how much,” Gingoyon said.
In a separate interview, Capitol Treasurer Roy Salubre said while he gave the documents on the distribution of checks to the barangays to former Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr., he couldn’t identify what budget items they ca,e from.
“My job is only to release the funds,” Salubre added.
Holganza said Garcia had been allocating aid to barangays before last year ranging from P100,000 to P200,000.
“Well everything is political…it’s a political office so those who are here are political (animals),”Holganza quipped when asked why not all barangays get the funding.
Holganza said only 30 percent of more than 1,000 barangays in Cebu province receive financial aid from the governor’s office.
Over 540 checks were issued by Garcia from July to December last year worth P141,198,615.42.
Of the amount, about P66.5 million were alloted for the renovation of barangay halls, day care centers or health centers.
The checks listed P100,000 to P200,000 per barangay hall or day care center.
The doleouts also included assistance to town festivals who joined the Pasigarbo sa Sugbo Festival.
Participating towns receive P300,000 to P500,000 for each towns. /Dale G. Israel, Reporter