‘Zero projects for those the gods wish to destroy’ — Lagman
Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman on Wednesday slammed the administration’s depriving 24 dissenting House lawmakers of constituents’ fund as it was driven by “vengeance and caprice.”
Lagman confirmed in a statement that some of the members of the “Magnificent 7” opposition bloc were among the victims of the zero allocations for the 2018 General Appropriations Act (GAA).
Inquirer earlier reported that some 24 “undesirable” lawmakers were not given infrastructure funding for their districts or party-list constituencies for taking critical positions against the Duterte administration.
Aside from Lagman, the Magnificent 7 members include Teddy Baguilat Jr. of Ifugao, Gary Alejano of Magdalo, Edgar Erice of Caloocan, Tom Villarin of Akbayan, Raul Daza of Northern Samar and Emmanuel Billones of Capiz.
Lagman, Baguilat, Erice and Billones belong to the LP.
Lagman said this move by the majority was “projected to punish and silence opposition legislators even as it is their constituencies who are deprived of the benefits of infrastructure development.”
“Why punish citizens and communities for the earnest and valiant efforts of their Representatives to maintain responsible dissent as the bedrock of democracy?” Lagman asked.
The opposition lawmaker said that when House appropriations committee chair Rep. Karlo Nograles was asked about the budget cut, Nograles would reply: “Ask Speaker Alvarez.”
Inquirer tried to seek Alvarez and Nograles’ comment but they have yet to respond. /je