• Show us the money


    THE six-year Aquino administration is almost over and it is still plagued by the very same problems it started with—it needs to spend more and speed up projects under the public private partnership (PPP) program to boost the economy.

    The government has failed to stimulate economic activity in the country as shown by the first-quarter economic numbers.

    Gross domestic product grew by only 5.2 percent, more than 20 percent below expectations. Economists blamed the slowdown in the growth to underspending by the national government.

    Does the Aquino administration not know how to spend without pork barrel or its Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), which the Supreme Court had declared unconstitutional?

    The drop in infrastructure spending brings down GDP and employment.

    Government spending must now be pursued aggressively for sustainable growth and job generation.

    The private sector is doing its part. The taxpayers are doing their part. What is the government doing?

    I mean, how hard is it to spend our taxes? Apparently, with this administration, very hard.

    The Aquino administration has been quite diligent in collecting taxes. The country’s tax effort has been on an upward trend in the past four years from 12.2 percent in 2010 to 13.6 percent in 2014. It has set a goal of further raising the tax effort to 16.6 percent by 2016.

    But like I said in previous columns we need to see concretely where our taxes go and how they are spent.

    Taxes should be spent primarily on public infrastructure, education, and health services.

    Taxpayers who need healthcare should be able to go to any public hospital and get quality treatment. They should be able to send their kids to public schools and get quality education. They need well-built roads that do not flood after short downpours and are not clogged with traffic. They need well-lit, clean and safe streets, not dark, dirty and crime-infested ones. They need a government that can be relied upon to take care of them if they lose their jobs or once they are old and can no longer work.

    If the government cannot guarantee these then it is better off reducing taxes so that the people can have more money to spend and the private sector can stimulate the economy.

    Reducing income taxes would put more money in the pockets of workers to help them cope with the high cost of living. This money would be spent on goods and services thereby boosting the economy.

    More money for workers to spend means increased demand for goods and services, which results in more jobs for more people to spend more money, which results in more people paying taxes and the government making more money.

    If the government is inefficient it is better off taking a backseat.

    Several investors during the trips of President Aquino abroad have signified interest in the infrastructure projects but despite its launching, PPP projects have been delayed as government agencies continued to review costs and procurement procedures. What PPP projects have been finished so far?

    And after nearly five years on the job, Aquino and his people have not figured out public finance or proper budget planning. They don’t know how to plan and program projects in the pipeline.

    Infrastructure construction is stagnant. Government infrastructure spending dropped by 24 percent in the first three months of 2015.

    The Aquino administration implemented the K-to-12 curriculum change and yet the government’s budget allocation for education could not even address the severe lack of classrooms, teachers, textbooks and other basic needs.

    The power sector is supplying one of the most expensive electricity rates in the world.

    The government is helping the poor only through its multibillion conditional cash transfers.

    Only tax collection improved. The government collected 18 percent more in taxes and revenues in the first quarter, or around P408 billion.

    Again, where is our money? Show us the money.


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    1. Manny Alintana on

      Despite the annual underspending of the Pnoy government, I cannot assume that the unspent money will remain in the Treasury. I have a gut feeling that these moneys will all be spent in the next election. Laki problema ng susunod na presidente, puro kabulukan na nga ang sasalubong sa kanya, bancrupt pa ang kaban ng bayan at wala syang pondo para mahabol ang backlogs. Obviously, we need a president who can be competent and seasoned enough to go against these possible odds. And definitely, hindi si Disgrace yon…

    2. Mr. Jun Adan is absolutely right. Jail for these treasonous people of our nation.

    3. Much better if we can opt-out paying our taxes, if we are not satisfied with the government’s performance.

      It is like, if we are not satisfied with the product or service that we paid for, there’s a money back guarantee.

      We are very unfortunate to pay huge taxes, only to receive nothing or crap. And yet we know that the money just go to the pockets of the “public servants” (yet, they live like kings) and we are too helpless and powerless to do something about that (because of too much priviledge and immunity in our “laws” for them).

      And much painful reality is the weight of sanctions for those who failed to pay their taxes, against those who stole them. Justice does not exist.

    4. Pnoy is no expert at all in economic development and is not a good manager. Pnoy is a wizard only in political bribery and that’s the way he convince others to follow his personal agenda. As a mediocre thinker Pnoy probably doesn’t know how the PPP works and stimulate the economy. Just like his mother, Cory, the funds are just parked and remain unused to fund government projects on public infrastructure, education, health services, energy shortage and expensive power, crime-fighting. The PPP which is supposed to support sustainable economic growth and uplift job creations are not given critical attention by Pnoy. Instead, he seem to be preoccupied with politics for the 2016 election and the BBL passage in Congress, which is a treasonous act of selling the region of Mindanao to the fanatic Moros. Pnoy appear to be a very shallow leader to guide the nation to economic prosperity. His brain-damaged thinking provides disastrous results to various needed Improvements in all aspects of governance. His “tuwid na daan” policy is so one-sided, a double standard in implementation and a hypocritical approach to honest governance but serves only as a slogan for vindictively scathing his political opponents and protecting his friends and political allies. He personally condone corruption of friends like Purisima, allies like Abad, ALCALA, Drilon and other members of Congress found by COA to have malversed their PDAF and DAP funds for their own enrichment. Pnoy term is about to end with a loud flop. Thank God it’s almost over for the nation will suffer more from his lack of sensitivity to people’s plight. I hope he gets to jail as his retirement place!