Press Release
December 4, 2013

Interview after the approval of the supplemental budget

On the approval of the supplemental budget, it's certified as urgent

Yes certified as urgent, appropriating P14.6 billion; P3.4 billion to the QRF of the DSWD and remaining balance of P11.2 billion to the calamity fund of the President. Again to address the needs and requirements for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction in the damaged areas brought about by both natural and man-made calamities.

It's not just for Yolanda?

No. It covers all previous calamities, it's in Section 2 of the bill, to include I think if I'm not mistaken Odette, Labuyo, Pablo, Vinta, Santi, the earthquake, the Zamboanga siege and Yolanda. This came from the general funds, thus the certification issued by the national treasurer, if this came from the general funds, the cash is from the general funds by virtue of the Supreme Court decision that said the amounts that they declared illegal shall forthwith be sent or brought to the general fund.

After this approval automatic mari-release na?

No. It needs to be, unless it's adopted by the House, we have to go through bicameral conference committee and it will be only effective upon the completion of its publication in two newspapers of general circulation.

It was certified as urgent by the President after Yolanda?

It was only given I think late last week, I think the certification was only made last week. But you have to understand too not that it happened after Yolanda but it was brought about by the cash made available by virtue of the Supreme Court decision.

How's the rest of the budget hearing...

Our scheduled bicam is on December 10, at 9 am, it's open, it's public. In fact live streaming siya kamukha nang ginawa namin sa committee hearing, sa plenary debates. Hopefully we can complete it in one or two days.

This is earlier than the usual (the budget approval)

Yes but you have to understand we still have to print it, still has to be reviewed by the President for the exercise of his line item veto, you want to give him enough time.

Sir may breakdown?

Walang breakdown, dalawa lang yung breakdown: P3.4 billion QRF of DSWD, P11.2 calamity fund ng Presidente.

Paano matsi-check ang paggastos?

Kailangan nilang mag-submit ng special budget sa DBM, which in turn will be furnished the House, the Senate and post on their websites. Yes, approved on third reading by the Senate. It's a certified bill we can do second and third reading on the same day.

May bicam pa?

Unless the House agrees to our amendments, we made minor amendments to the bill in so far as reportorial, transparency and accountability provisions are concerned. I hope and I expect that they will not object to that and if they don't, they can adopt the Senate version sans a bicameral conference committee.

Open to the public?

Yes the bicam will be held on December 10, 9:00 am, it will be open to the public, it will be held here in the Senate. Whoever is interested may live streaming kami, as we did in the committee hearings and plenary debates, if anyone is interested to watch and listen.

On Senators Miriam and Enrile's tussle

I'm both saddened and I find it unfortunate the two members are throwing accusations against each other and hurling personal attacks against each other in the Senate floor. I don't think any member of the Senate would want that to happen to any other his or her fellow member.

Buti na lang din napag-usapan yung budget after that

Yes. I waited patiently for that to happen and I was confident that we would be able to pass this important piece of legislation to address the needs of our citizens affected by calamities in recent weeks.

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