Lawmaker wants Arroyo program probed | Inquirer News

Lawmaker wants Arroyo program probed

/ 03:52 AM August 21, 2011

A lawmaker is seeking an inquiry into the operation of the corn program of the previous administration called “Ginintuang Masaganang Ani (GMA),”  which a Commission on Audit (COA) report in 2007 said had incurred huge losses.

In filing House Resolution No. 1417, Anakpawis party-list Representative Rafael Mariano urged the committee on agriculture and food to summon former officials of the Department of Agriculture (DA) to shed light on the matter.

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Mariano said former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had ordered the release of P18.25 billion to fund the “GMA for Corn Program” from 2002 to 2009 under the Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act, and in 2010 under the DA budget.

He said Arroyo, now a Pampanga representative, ordered a lump-sum allocation for the corn program, which made it difficult to monitor.

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“The lump-sum budget was also regarded as the source of irregularities and corruption,” Mariano said.

He said that from 2002 to 2008, the budget for the GMA for Corn Program was lumped together with the budget for the rice the program, and it was only in 2009 and 2010 that a separate budget for corn program was allocated.

He said the 2007 COA report showed that the DA’s banner programs, including the GMA for Corn Program, incurred losses or were characterized by the waste of government resources.

But he did not disclose figures.

Mariano said regional field units of the DA admitted the GMA Corn Program from 2007 to 2008 was a failure. Cynthia D. Balana

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TAGS: COA, Commission On Audit, Congress, Department of Agriculture, Ginintuang Masaganang Ani, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Government, Rafael Mariano
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