Press Release
November 19, 2013


Q: On the senator's waiver of their PDAF in the 2014 budget

SPFMD: It is now very clear that the waiver of the PDAF for 2014 budget would mean that the deficit would be reduced by P3.2 billion, so that the original P266.2 billion in the deficit would now be P263 Billion. This is significant because we will be reducing our borrowings for this P3.2 billion - not only for the actual expenses to be made, but also on the interest rates we would have to pay if we have to borrow this amount.

Q: On suggestions made by Sen. Recto regarding increasing the Rehab Fund

SPFMD: Yes, that is on the table. That will be debated further. Right now the rehabilitation fund as we have proposed is originally P15 billion, now it has been increased by P5 billion, making it P20 billion. The principal source right now is the Miscellaneous Personnel Benefit Fund, which will be reduced from P81 billion to P61 Billion, which is workable. Now that Sen. Recto has made a proposal, I'm sure that will be debated on the floor.

Q: On the administrative cases against Senators Enrile, Estrada and Revilla filed by the Office of the Ombudsman, and their referral to the Senate Ethics Committee

SPFMD: We will await the referral and once we have it we will organize the Ethics Committee. It's our duty to constitute that. I doubt that we could have it this year. As we have discussed on the caucus yesterday, we will be debating the budget, and the interpellations will terminate on Nov. 28, the approval of the third reading for it would be on the first week of December. We may not have the time. Also, the FOI bill is on the floor. So the calendar may not allow us to tackle this referral within the year.

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