Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on Friday reiterated that the proposed 2019 budget, as approved by the House of Representatives, was the work of the chamber’s appropriations committee and that she had no hand in its preparation.
She made the statement after some senators continued obstructing the enactment of the 2019 budget bill, claiming that Arroyo’s allies in the House were given as much as P95 billion in so-called insertions in the budget.
However, one of Arroyo’s critics in the Senate was alleged to have inserted P50 billion for his favored public works and other projects in the same budget bill.
Arroyo, who was the guest of honor and speaker during the 32nd Biennial Convention of the Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told reporters she never “micromanaged” the preparation of the budget bill in the house.
“Nonoy [Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. of Camarines Sur, appropriations committee chairman] has been saying that over and over again. The budget is the work of the appropriations committee and the bicameral panel,” Arroyo said.
“I think [Congressmen Fredenil] Castro and Nonoy Andaya and Edcel Lagman have already been setting the record straight that they were the ones who worked on the budget and not me, and they have been setting the record straight.”
Lagman, leader of the House Independent Bloc, is also an Arroyo critic but in the issue of the budget had been supporting her.
The House is standing by its line budgeting system while the Senate seeks to restore the lump-sum appropriations system,that has been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.