DAP funds not only for Mandaluyong flood control projects, says solon | Inquirer News

DAP funds not only for Mandaluyong flood control projects, says solon

/ 02:04 PM October 09, 2014

renato reyes tweet mandaluyong flood

MANILA, Philippines — Mandaluyong Representative Neptali Gonzales II denied Thursday that his funds from the Disbursement Acceleration Program were used solely for flood-control projects.

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In a statement, Gonzales, majority floor leader at the House of Representatives, said Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. claims that he used up P62 million in DAP funds were “unfair . . . without knowing the true state of the ongoing flood control project”.

Reyes said that he received on Twitter pictures of flooded streets in Mandaluyong City during Tuesday’s downpour. “They were asking, ‘Where did Majority Leader Boyet (Neptali) Gonzales place his flood control project [funds] in Mandaluyong?’” said Reyes.

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“Let me emphasize that the ongoing project for the Boni-Maysilo including its peripheral areas is thru my initiative although it is being funded and implemented by the (Department of Public Works and Highways). This is a comprehensive project which has an estimate of a little less than a billion pesos, due to the severity of the flood problem in the area which has been a bane for decades…” Gonzales said.

Gonzales said he found it “misleading” that the pictures made it appear like all his P62 million was allotted for flood control projects, when this wasn’t true.

“It was also very unfair and misleading because it was pictured as if the P62 million allotted to me was solely for the purpose of flood control projects only, which clearly it is not. In fact, it was only around P4 million that was utilized for flood control,” Gonzales said.

The House leader broke down his DAP funds allotment:

Scholarships P5 million

Counterpart for Philhealth P3 million
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Repair of government facilities P3 million
(PNP/Jails)

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Rehabilitation and maintenance P8 million
of schools

Rice subsidy P5 million

Repair and rehabilitation P20.8 million
of roads (concreting) of different barangay (villages)

Dredging of Buhangin and P8 million
Maytunas Creeks

Declogging of canals P9.2 million
in 13 barangay

Gonzales said not all the funds were spent for the projects. He said he only spent P28.977 million and returned the rest to the Bureau of Treasury after the Supreme Court ruled the practice of using savings under DAP as unconstitutional.

He said all-in-all, only the two dredging projects were implemented with at least P3.9 million of the total P8 million. The rest of the funds were returned.

The declogging project was not implemented, Gonzales added.

He maintained that he did not know that the funds used for these projects came from DAP.

“I believe that as a congressman my constituents somehow still expects that I do not perform only my legislative works but also attend to other practical and more direct projects that affect the day-to-day lives of my constituents. Therefore on my part I am also responsive thru having hard projects like the construction of the additional classrooms for various schools… the repair rehabilitation of schools, multi-purpose buildings, including barangay halls and day cares and health centers, and the 10-story building of the Rizal Technological University and the five-story Justice Hall building that can accommodate 18 courts, a post office and Comelec office,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales made the statement as Bayan’s Reyes claimed that in a tabulation of DAP projects made by the Computer Professionals’ Union (CPU) based on data from the Department of Budget and Management, there is an “irrational” pattern of deploying money taken from the budget savings of other agencies.

Reyes said 14 percent, or P1.9 billion, of the DAP funds for lawmakers went to barangay roads in districts chosen by legislators and their allied governors and mayors.

Reyes said these barangay roads were built a year before the 2013 elections, proof that DAP was used like pork barrel funds.

Roughly 10 percent or P1.25 billion of DAP funds to lawmakers were funneled into flood control projects, Reyes said.

The allocation of the DAP funds runs counter to Budget Secretary Florencio Abad’s claims that the DAP was meant to stimulate the economy, Reyes said.

The DAP became controversial after Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, who is detained for plunder over the pork barrel scam, claimed that funds from the savings-impounding mechanism were given as incentives to senators who voted to convict ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona.

The Supreme Court ruled some practices under DAP unconstitutional at the height of the public outcry.

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TAGS: Bayan, DAP, Disbursement Acceleration Program, Flood, flood-control projects, Mandaluyong, Neptali Gonzales II, Politics, Renato Reyes Jr.
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