MALACAÑANG on Saturday welcomed the House of Representatives’ approval of the P4.506-trillion 2021 General Appropriations Bill (GAB) on third and final reading on Friday evening.
“We thank the House of Representatives for passing on third and final reading the 2021 General Appropriations Bill on time or within the special session called by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement Saturday.
Roque said the President has several times articulated the importance of the timely passage of the budget, as the government needs resources to fund its interventions to ease the adverse effects of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
He, meanwhile, hoped that the House would transmit its printed copy to the Senate as soon as possible to give the latter “ample time” to act on the legislative measure, which has been certified urgent by the President.
Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar echoed Roque’s statement as he likewise hoped for a “swift” and “efficient” Senate deliberation.
“As the 2021 GAB progresses to the Senate for its deliberation, the House of Representatives’ approval of the bill will go a long way in helping support and realize the Duterte administration’s outlined undertakings, responses, and programs for our collective recovery from the adverse impacts of COVID-19,” Andanar said.
“We hope that the Senate’s deliberation on the 2021 GAB will be swift and efficient, in order for us to be on track towards fulfilling our mandate to the Filipinos and our goal of healing, rebounding, and recovering as one nation.”
A total of 267 lawmakers approved House Bill 7727 or the 2021 GAB on Friday after the plenary passed the measure on second and third reading on the same day. Only six lawmakers opposed, while no one abstained from voting.
The House gave its green light to the 2021 GAB after holding a special session from October 13 to 16, as called upon by the President. Philippine News Agency