MANILA, Philippines – “It would be easier for a camel to pass through a needle than to have the House version of the proposed P4.1-billion 2020 national budget pass the Senate,” so to speak.
Senate President Vicente Sotto III made the statement after their Monday caucus. They all agreed that they cannot readily approve and adopt the House version due to several amendments that need to be done in the budget.
“We discussed the schedule. We cannot adopt it. Many amendments necessary,” said Senate President Sotto.
The senators arrived at that decision amid Senator Panfilo Lacson’s expose of the purported “parked” funds for several government agencies amounting to P20-billion, with no detailed item on where and how it is going to be used.
Some senators have also expressed their sentiments against an immediate passage of the House version of the budget.
Senator Lacson asked for transparency as the hearing on the proposed budget continues.
He asked to have the proposed amendments submitted by his fellow lawmakers be made public, especially when the proposed budget is referred to the bicameral conference committee. (from the report of Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf
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