PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is expected to do much traveling to and from Davao City next year as his travel expense has been increased to P2.12 billion next year from P312 million this year.
He is also expected to mount a much greater intelligence work as his intelligence fund allocation has been increased to P1.25 billion next year from P250 million this year.
Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman of the opposition questioned the 10-fold increase in the budget of the Office of the President, or from P2 billion this year to P20 billion next year.
Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said P15 billion of the P20 billion was allocated for the Philippines’ hosting of the 50th Asean Summit next year.
“We took P15 billion for the Asean’s golden anniversary. P15 billion is not unreasonable considering [next year will be the Asean’s] 50th anniversary,” Diokno said.
Under next year’s budget, some P11.07 billion will be allocated to the Office of the President, the Department of Tourism will get P749 million, the Presidential Communications Operations Office will get P1.4 billion, the Department of Trade will get P177 million, and the Interior Department will get P2 billion.
The President’s representation allowance was also increased to P7.5 billion in 2017 from P139 million this year.
COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.