Andaya: House to avoid reenacted 2019 budget like leptospirosis

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The House leadership has shrugged off the possibility of having a re-enacted budget for next year despite a stalemate between legislators and the economic managers of the Duterte Administration over the cash-based budgeting under the proposed 2019 General Appropriations Act (GAA).

House Majority Floor Leader Rolando “Nonoy” Andaya Jr. (Camarines Sur) said the House of Representatives would “avoid having a reenacted budget like leptospirosis.”

“We are not moving towards that… hindi natin papayagan na mangyari iyan,” said Andaya.

On Monday, Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said Malacañang was “not scared” over the possibility of having of a re-enacted budget amid the House-DBM standoff on the cash-based budgeting scheme.

Andaya said Roque’s statement was “very unfortunate.”

“Hindi dapat na ganoon eh. He should have exerted effort to at least find out what the problem is. Iyon na nga eh, lahat ng gabinete hindi rin naiintindihan yung ginagawa nila eh. So kung yung sarili nyang katabi sa cabinet meeting yung ginagawa. How much more kami?” said Andaya.

On Saturday, Davao City Rep. Karlo Alexei Nograles, chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations announced that his panel will suspend the budget deliberations for the proposed Php 3.757 trillion National Budget for 2019 until further notice.

The Davao City lawmaker stressed that majority of legislators have opposed the cash-based budgeting scheme submitted by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC).

Andaya disclosed that last week’s budget hearings have taken longer and that cabinet secretaries are turning this “into a confession-sessions,” in which they are all griping about the cuts in the budgets and uncertainties on how the budget will be implemented on a cash basis.

“I think it’s about time na tumigil muna kami dun sa pag hear ng budget and make sense of it. Hindi na kami makatanong eh. When we asked questions, the usual answer is DBM made the cut,” said Andaya.