P800M DAP funds used to fix Palace, tourism, etc.
MANILA, Philippines–Some P800 million from the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), which the Supreme Court recently declared unconstitutional, was spent for construction, renovation and equipment upgrade in Malacañang.
Documents obtained by the Inquirer showed the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) issued a special allotment release order (Saro) three years ago channeling P17.94 million to the Office of the President (OP) for the “proper restoration and rehabilitation of various rooms in Malacañang Palace.”
The OP had not replied to the Inquirer’s query as of press time.
Another DAP-Saro amounting to P248.37 million was released in 2011 to upgrade Malacañang’s communication system for the Presidential Security Group. The DAP-Saro was issued through the Department of National Defense (DND).
The DND also received another DAP-Saro in 2012 for P60 million for the “rehabilitation of the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) air education and training command.”
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), on the other hand, used P15 million from the DAP to repair and rehabilitate the Philippine National Police crime laboratory. The DBM issued two DAP-Saros in 2011 for this project.
P100M for think tank
The budget department also issued a P100-million DAP-Saro in 2011 for the land purchase and building construction expenses of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), a state-run economic think tank.
This was exclusive of the P560 million in DAP funds given to PIDS for research grants in the capacity building program of leading universities.
A P20-million DAP-Saro was issued to the Department of Justice (DOJ) to modernize and build new crime laboratories for the National Bureau of Investigation.
The amount was on top of other DAP funds granted to the DOJ, such as P20 million for the purchase of new computers for the NBI; P14.2 million for the information technology upgrade of the Office of the Solicitor General; and P7 million for the training of NBI agents.
P144M for COA
For its part, the Commission on Audit (COA) received P143.7 million in DAP funds in 2011 to buy new computers and hire more litigation experts.
The DAP also funded the Department of Tourism’s P207-million “Kilometer Zero” national monument hardscape and softscape projects and P25-million Cine Corregidor complex preservation project in 2011.
In 2012, the tourism department also received P1.77 billion from the DAP for the “convergence program on enhancing tourism access.”
These were part of the 1,014 DAP-Saros issued by the DBM from October 2011 to December 2013 covering P150.6 billion in savings transferred from other agencies and slow-moving projects.
Around 90 percent of the DAP-Saros were given to lawmakers.
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