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Palace tells bicam: Agree on 2018 national budget

/ 07:03 AM December 05, 2017

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque INQUIRER PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC

Get your act together.

Malacañang made this call to the Senate and House of Representatives on Monday as it dismissed concerns that Congress might fail to pass the proposed 2018 national budget, leaving the government with a reenacted budget next year.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque reminded the lawmakers in the bicameral conference committee trying to reconcile the versions of the two chambers that the 2018 budget was “crucial” to the ambitious “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program of the Duterte administration.

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“The Palace has all the confidence that we will have a budget pursuant to the request made by the Palace, and because this budget is crucial to the ‘Build, Build, Build’ program intended to alleviate poverty in this country,” Roque said in a media briefing.

Malacañang had submitted a proposed P3.767-trillion national budget but at least two issues are causing a rift between the Senate and House panels in the bicameral committee.

House members opposed the Senate’s move to cut P50.7 billion from the budget of the Department of Public Works and Highways for right-of-way acquisitions.

The House also bucked the Senate’s realignment of the Philippine National Police’s P900-million drug campaign budget and the Department of the Interior and Local Government’s P500-million outlay for its own drug program to housing for policemen and soldiers.

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TAGS: 17th Congress, 2018 national budget, Harry Roque, Rodrigo Duterte
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