Just decline it

December 07, 2018

Sometimes the answer to our biggest problems may be found in just two letters––NO.

In order to escape the trap that big, bad money lays down, one only needs to look away.

Giving in to massive fiscal temptation is the surest way to slide down the slippery slope to perdition.

And the lawmaker is consistent as he is right on the money.

If the "pork" in Pampanga and Camarines Sur worth some P4.3 billion stemmed from a "misplaced gesture of generosity," the beneficiaries can show good faith by declining such amounts, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson said.

Lacson issued the advice after House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. said the allocations were a show of "misplaced generosity" to public works regional directors seeking funding for road and flood control projects.

"Since Majority Leader Andaya claims that the huge earmarks for his and (Speaker Gloria) Arroyo's districts are a case of 'misplaced gesture of generosity,' maybe they can display a 'genuine gesture of good faith' by deleting or reducing those humongous allocations," Lacson said on his Twitter account.

On Wednesday, Lacson bared a congressman got at least P1.9 billion in congressional insertions while a congresswoman got P2.4 billion.

Figures from the General Appropriations Bill 2 - the House version of the national budget bill - showed P2.4 billion worth of projects are in Pampanga's second district while P1.9 billion in projects are in Camarines Sur.

These amounts are aside from the P60 million each House member got for his or her pet projects.

Andaya represents the first district of Camarines Sur, while Speaker Arroyo represents the second district of Pampanga.

But Andaya was quoted as saying the House Appropriations Committee was behind the P4.3 billion "pork" in the House version of the proposed P3.7-trillion budget for 2019.

He added he did not seek added funding for road projects in his district, and even asked the House appropriations committee not to make insertions without notifying the Senate.

The committee, however, showed "misplaced generosity" and accommodated requests by regional directors of the Department of Public Works and Highways for road projects in Camarines Sur and flood control projects in Pampanga, Andaya was quoted as saying.