DAP draft ruling out

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An overwhelming majority of justices of the Supreme Court (SC) are expected to concur with the draft ponencia of Associate Justice Lucas Bersamin that declares the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) as unconstitutional.

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The Manila Times’ source in the tribunal said Bersamin’s 95-page ponencia raised four points on why DAP was illegal.

“Ang ganda ng pagkakasulat ni Luke [Bersamin’s nickname] mahirap kontrahin. Eh magaling naman talaga si Luke. Kaya sure na unconstitutional ang DAP [The draft decision is well written, it would be hard to question it. Bersamin is really good. It’s sure that DAP will be ruled as unconstitutional],” the source said.

The source added that Bersamin’s ponencia declares DBM Circular 541 unconstitutional and orders the issuance of a “prohibitive injunction” against the circular from the Department of Budget and Management.

The circular, issued by Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad on July 18, 2012, allowed the DBM to withdraw and pool the unobligated allotments of agencies “with low levels of obligations for continuing and current allotments.” These funds were then used for other priority programs and projects.

Several groups and individuals, including the Integrated Bar of the Philippines; Philippine Constitutional Association; Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption; Carol Araullo; Pork Barrel System Petitioners led by Greco Belgica, Reuben Abante and Jose Gonzales; former Iloilo Rep. Augusto Syjuco; and Citizens Crime Watch as represented by lawyers Jose Malvar Villegas Jr. and Manuelito Luna, filed petitions questioning the legality of the DAP at the Supreme Court.

The respondents are President Benigno Aquino 3rd and Abad.

Malacañang cited poverty alleviation as a major reason behind its creation of the program.

The SC en banc is expected to vote on Tuesday, July 1, on whether DAP is constitutional.

In his ponencia, Bersamin raised four grounds on why DAP is unconstitutional—cross border tossing of funds, use of funds for unlisted projects, implementing new projects even if concerned agencies had no savings to fund such projects and using DAP funds for projects that did not undergo bidding.

The magistrate said the SC “ought to halt the cross border tossing of funds,” referring to the transfer of government funds from one branch to another. The justice, in particular, pointed out the illegal transfer of funds by the executive department to the Commission on Audit and the Commission on Elections and the legislative branch.

This “cross-border” scheme was first employed by Malacanang at the height of the impeachment trial of former Chief Justice Renato Corona. The Times source said most of the justices are of the opinion that the scheme violates the doctrine of separation of powers.

Although the Constitution allows the President to use savings under his “fiscal autonomy”, the magistrates are of the opinion that he cannot transfer savings to other branches of the government.

The SC magistrates also pointed out that projects that are not listed under the General Appropriations Act (GAA) must be declared illegal and unconstitutional. They said the GAA has the force and effect of a law since it is passed by Congress and signed by the President of the Philippines. As such, the SC justices see that a prohibitive injunction must be issued in funding projects that are unlisted under the GAA.

Some justices also believe that it is unconstitutional to fund projects if there are no savings to begin with for these projects to get started, as well as bankrolling with DAP funds projects that are awarded despite the absence of public bidding.

It was Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada who exposed DAP when, in a privileged speech, he claimed that the senators were bribed by as much as P50 million each to convict Corona. He said the money given to the senators came from DAP.

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22 Comments

  1. Walang ibang dapat sisihin sa Disbursement Acceleration Program kundi si DBM Sec Abad.Kapal lang dahil ayaw magresign

  2. Amen!!! Atleast Pnoy appointees cannot out number and outwit the brilliant senior justices of the supreme court.!!! Thank you senior justices! for sure sereno will try to block the declaration of the unconstitutionality of DAP. The Phil is not hopeless afterall. Prayers to our justices.

  3. I do hope that the justices of the Supreme Court will declare DAF unconstitional and not be intimidated by the Aquino administration. There should be an audit done by the DOJ but then the head of the department is headed by De Lima who is an ally of the administration. It should be audited and investigated by independent auditors and investigators with no political affiliation.

  4. this is one example to all elected and appointed official of the government. Joggling of funds is illegal .The big question is ? bakit wlang audit report yan dba alam yan ng mga tga COA Why coa is so silent about DAP coz it is a dept owned by 2 person only DAP means Dept Of Abad and Pinoy.Kawawa n naman kaming mga OFW we pay our taxes on time sabi nila kami ang mga bagong bayani ng bansa pero perang binabayad namin sa tax ninanakaw lang ng ganun kadali . Paano ang bansa natin if we ofw’s d mag remit in 3 months dba wlang papasok na dollar sa kaban natin . 2016 is near please naman po kapwa ko filipino pumili naman tau ng matinong mga leaders ng ating bansa . kahit senador at mga local officials natin wag na muna kau mag boto kahit isang taga LP pls lang po if like nyo makaahon bansa natin

    • the simple and now becoming obvious reason is that the current head of COA’s eyes is moist on the SC Associate Justice position that will be soon vacated.

  5. How can BSA be impeached each congressman who endorsed the impeachment of Corona received 15 million each. How many congressman are there who received? 20 senators got 50-100 million and majority in congress belongs to LP. The question is will congress endorsed the impeachment of BSA even if there is sufficient in form and in substance? I still hope and pray they will do their patriotic duty to endorsed and impeached BSA.

  6. Hail to the Present Supreme Court. Though majority of its justices were appointed by the President, still they chose to do what is right. It is a proof that PNOY is not harassing this Law Body. PNOY was bitten by SC by nullifying the Truth Commision and now, God willing, the DAP.

    • Correction lang po, only 4 justices lang ang appointee ni BSA out of 14 justices. Pang 5 si Grace Pullido Tan yung chairman ng COA if ever matuloy siya but I hope it will not come to that. IMPEACHed na si BSA by that time, I hope.

  7. …please published the name of those judges voted yes and no, for the filipino people should know these people who in way save our future, to thank them even in prayers…

  8. …our supreme court once again defends this country
    against those who front themselves as pro poor and pro daan matuwid…akala siguro nila dahil mataas ang rating lahat ng sasabihin nila papaniwalaan…MAPAGPASENSYA ANG MGA PINOY PERO DI MGA TANGA…SALAMAT PO, SUPREME COURT…for defending our future and the generation to come….

  9. The day of reckoning is coming. Pnoy and Abad must be put behind bars!! The Filipino people have been deceived by the Aquinos for a long time.

  10. Bernardo Carpio on

    This is ALL a Moro-Moro.

    The Real intention of DAP is for the Aquino-Conjuangco Clan to steal directly from the Treasury.
    Magnanakaw sila ng Lupa. Eh magnanakaw ng pera lalu na Presidente na ay mas madali ng gawin.

    Is is Thievery plain and simple.

    Aquino should be impeached and put to jail for Crimes Against the Filipino Nation.
    Abad should be put to death via firing squad for graft of the highest order.

    It is plain and simple. They stole public funds and until now there is no accounting of where Aquino put that 1,600,000,000,000.00 pesos funds under his disposal.

  11. Alejo Rosete on

    Are we Government of laws?

    Does the President understand the GAA?

    Did Abad mentor the President as he did to Janet?

    Who is Abad – Secretary of the DBM.

    What they are doing is worse than Martial Law.

    Absolute Power corrupts absolutely.

    My Lord and My God. The people changed Gloria for the worst.

    What about that PCOS in the Comelec – was it programmed to elect a President of this category?

  12. Benigno KUHA-KO AKIN-NA on

    WARRANT OF ARREST AND HOLD DEPARTURE ORDER AGAINST PeeNOY & Butch A-DAP MUST BE SERVED IMMEDIATELY….AND BRIBE MONEY RECEIVED BY SENATORS MUST BE RETURNED IMMEDIATELY TO THE FILIPINO PEOPLE.

  13. Eddie de Leon on

    Everybody with some knowledge of how governments work can see that the DAP invented by President Aquino and his Budget Secretary is just a way to get their hands on money literally by hook or by crook!

  14. This DAP is a new tag coined in the present administration. It is a violation of the Constitution since disbursement of funds must have a corresponding appropriation. Hence, savings do not mean that one has the right to use it. Even in barangays or in the local government units, appropriation ordinance must precede before disbursement of funds. This is very evident at the end of the year when savings are being verified to have funding for additional bonuses and this has to pass to the local legislative council for appropriation.

  15. DAP, Pork Barrel and other sleek schemes on government thievery should be unconstitutional and all those illegal activities should be closely monitored, investigated, audited,with NBI undercovers to spy on suspected plunderers. We need a tough , speedy and efficient justice system who will give mandatory sentences and not just slap on the wrist sentences. We have to disqualify those that are guilty to hold any elective office., and those with criminal cases that are pending should either resign or have a leave of absence with no pay until their cases are resolved.

  16. I agree! DAP (Disbursement Acceleration Program ) by Aquino issued as Executive Order purportedly to spur economic growth and poverty alleviation must be held illegal and unconstitutional : (1) for lack of legal basis ( an enabling budgetary measure either under the GAA or Supplemental Budget to support specific project/s approved by Congress and the President, whose implementation is done by the Executive Branch and not by Congressmen). (2). DAP doesn’t not conform to the budgetary “line item” requirement where the funds and the projects are specific in amount and project particularity. Executive Order creating transferable funds to another branch Lefgislative or Judiciary) or to another executive agency out of savings to support a different project is tantamount to “juggling of funds” is illegal and unconstitutional. Savings must be to support similar projects as specified on GAA. (3) transferring funds another branch like legislative (giving it away to members of Congress in addition to and like the PDAP) is technical diversion and malversation of specific earmarked funds ( estrada’s accusation falls under this category) . (4) deliberately discontinuing or canceling a project to be able to grab the funds therefor and deceitfully categorized it as savings is a n overt act of dishonesty and malice in the diversion and malversation of the funds.
    Aquino and Abad deliberately and wittingly created the DAP executive order purportedly to help accelerate the growth of economy and alleviate poverty but with the vile secretive intention to accumulate huge funds as grease or bribe money to legislators or other. Branch or agency to obey his command!
    In view of adopting this Michiavellian tactic, Aquino and Abad must be impeached and criminally prosecuted!

  17. Let us pray that there is no mischievous Justice who might attempt to insert a sentence in the ruling which may absolve PNoy and Abad in the process.

  18. Of course, the administration has already obtained advanced information of the ultimate declaration of the nullity or unconstitutionality of the DAP. That is why it was reported that ABad and Alcala are being investigated, or as they put it subtly, being “vetted” by the DOJ. Clearly, these two scalawags are being used by the administration to cushion the impact of the ultimate decision of the Supreme Court as against the Lord of the Pork.

    I can only pray that this advance report of the SC’s decision is accurate for indeed, it is satisfying to realize that we have a Supreme Court, the last bastion of defense against the abuses of this regime, that does not waver on its obligation to protect the people no matter what the hideous schemes of this administration against “uncooperative” justices are. To those Supreme Court Justices who will ultimately vote against the constitutionality of DAP, my profound gratitude. Mabuhay kayo.