New spending mechanism outside DAP discovered

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THE Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) is not the only mechanism that the administration of President Benigno Aquino 3rd is using to fund government programs with multi-billion savings pooled by the government, the Senate finance committee discovered on Thursday.

According to Sen. Francis Escudero, at least P90 billion worth of savings that did not fall under the DAP was released by the government to fund various programs of different government agencies including the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Escudero, who heads the finance panel, explained that based on records of the Department of Budget and Mangement (DBM), the government was able to pool P237 billion in savings since 2010 and only P167 billion was allotted for the acceleration program.

The government only approved P157 billion proposed projects under the controversial program but was able to release only P144.3 billion.


“This means there is a balance of more than P90 billion from pooled savings that were not under the DAP and we learned that the government also used this fund for other projects,” Escudero said.

The discovery was made by Sen. Nancy Binay who pointed out during the Senate panel hearing that there are some appropriations that were not on the DBM’s list of 116 projects funded by the DAP.

Binay mentioned the P4.1 billion additional funding in 2012 that the Comelec used for the 2013 mid-term elections.

Budget Secretary Florencio Abad told the Senate finance committee that the Comelec requested the money for the acquisition of precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines.

Originally, the poll body asked for a P17-billion budget but it was pruned to P7 billion.

The Comelec then asked for an addition P4.1 billion for collateral software support and maintenance, traveling, training and seminar expenses, warehousing and configuration facilities for PCOS machines, synchronization of the national and local elections, software licenses and additional requirements for overseas absentee voting.

“If it is not from the DAP, where did the money come from?” Binay asked Abad.

It was at this point when the Budget secretary admitted that there are some projects that were funded by savings outside of the DAP. According to Abad, it was called regular savings.

“We’re talking about another list of projects that do not fall under the DAP but were sourced from the savings,” Binay noted.

Another issue raised during the hearing is the P5 million additional allocation received by the Commission on Audit (COA) that was also not included in the DAP list.

According to Escudero, under item 18 of the DBM list, the agency only listed IT infrastructure program and hiring of additional litigation experts amounting to P143 million.

It failed to include the P5 million released to COA for the procurement of additional vehicles.

“According to DBM, because the amount was small, they did not include it in the list. That is unacceptable because budgeting is not done that way. Everything should be included in the list,” Escudero said.

In the end, he directed the DBM to provide the committee a list of guidelines and mechanism used in utilizing the non-DAP savings in order to find out if these savings were used properly.

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5 Comments

  1. I still do not comprehend how a DAP was created because of government savings.Are some of the projects or budgeted amounts to certain departments over budgeted? Do some of the profits from government sponsored corporations or revenues go directly to the President’s purse and used at his own disposal? How can there be savings when it seems like the whole country is in disarray because of luck of funds,Our infrastructure is crumbling except for some projects of political interest,Bureaucracy is ridiculous and is often tied up with corruption and the lets make a deal system,No Universal Health Care System in spite the overpopulation of Graduate Nurses and Doctors. ,There are plenty of land and spaces where the government can have mass resettlement programs to manage and ameliorate the lives of our homeless , jobless , hopeless and impoverished slum dwellers.Huge some of money are always budgeted for agrarian projects but we are still importing rice and food from other countries All of these funds could have been pooled into a National Cooperative System to assist , manage and generally help all our farmers to modernize and compete with other countries in food production. The same is true with our Fishing Industry. We need modern vessels to fish and protect our waters from China.With all the yearly disasters and calamities we are experiencing, I did not see a big funding to expand and train our military to be the top notch first responders to such emergencies.I did not notice a funding to create a Battalion of an Army Corps of Engineers to tackle Projects in Relocations, Housing and Infrastructures
    especially in remote and calamity stricken areas ..All I saw were band aids and bribes.

  2. Mr.Abad,yan ba ang tinatawag ninyong tranparency??? yan ba ang Good Faith?bakit nyo inilihim???ay sus! puro kayo kasinungalingan. buking na kayo! mag lakad na kayo sa tuwid na daan patungo sa kulongan!!!

  3. How do you generate “savings”? Supposing a creative President(?)/Budget secretary withhold releasing a legally budgeted amount for a department-will that not constitute savings-albeit a sequestered one as economist Benjamin Diokno repeatedly points out, as happened in the DAP?Then you can have Malacanang/Peenoy/Abad ultimately deciding what “projects” or whose projects to fund. From there the sky is the limit for politicians to fund their projects and the usual flexible percentages are filtered into politicians/dummies bank accounts.

    But come on, this happens in this administration and it happened in the past. Only the imagination is the limit. Credit Peenoy for being able to make the masses with the help of the media believe in his pieties

  4. Sen. Nancy Binay uncovered hidden projects not on the DAP list but sourced from “savings” and realigned. I can only guess that these projects were not meant to be discovered and open to public review. I think all of the undisclosed items will have major questions about them when revealed. Why else not include them on the list? Were they not trying to inflate the list and show how much they were able to stimulate the economy? So why else not include projects funded and implemented the same way?

    Sen. Nancy Binay, good job at the hearing.

  5. What i am struggleing with is why arnt the departments who get these allocations using them. does the problem lie with them. If they arnt up to the task of spending their allocactions then surely get rid of them & replace them with people who can manage a budget. My next point is why dont we ever hear of these problems in other countries. What is it that they do differently. Could we not look at what they do & if it works then why not adopt that policy. Is it the politicians in this country look at how they can move money around from agency to agency to make it easier to steal it, i dont know im just asking but i cant ever in my 61 years remember anything like this in the uk. So why is the philippines having all these problems. We know the government has to use our tax payers money to run the government, so why are we having so many problems, does it need to go back to square one to start again & start doing it right. Im just asking questions as i dont have a clue at all & i bet 99% of the population are just like me clueless on whats happening to this country.