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Only SC can stop gov’t from releasing money via DAP

/ 09:56 PM October 07, 2013

MANILA, Philippines — The government has no reason to suspend its Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), with there being no legal impediment to it unless the Supreme Court declares it unconstitutional, according to Iloilo Rep. Jerry Treñas.

The viewpoints of other parties, such as those of legal expert Fr. Joaquin Bernas, should not affect the administration’s policies, since only the Supreme Court could have the final word on Constitutional and judicial matters, Treñas added.

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“I think that it is best that we bring this issue to the Supreme Court and find out who’s got the strongest legal position on this matter about the DAP,” Treñas said in a statement.

“But until then, I think that there is no legal stumbling block for the  Department of Budget and Management if it decides to continue implementing  DAP,” he added.

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The DAP, which the administration created in 2011, has been used to course funds consisting of government savings to the chosen projects of legislators. The funds were meant supposedly to increase government spending and stimulate the economy.

DAP releases were usually funded from unreleased appropriations, which happens when certain positions are not filled, and from the Unprogrammed Fund, which comes from revenues generated beyond the target.

Earlier, Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada alleged that the DAP was used to provide additional pork barrel to senators who voted to convict Chief Justice Renato Corona.

Budget Secretary Florencio Abad has denied that the DAP was used to bribe lawmakers.

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TAGS: constitutional law, Disbursement Acceleration Program, discretionary funds, government funds, House of Representatives, Jerry Treñas, Joaquin Bernas, lump sum appropriations, National Budget, News, Philippine Congress, Philippine Government, Pork barrel, Priority Development Assistance Funds, State Budget and Taxes
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