Among the Bicol provinces, Albay got the lion’s share of infrastructure funds from the Department of Public Works and Highways, contrary to a lawmaker’s claim.
Albay had the highest allocation at P11.2 billion, official documents from the DPWH showed.
Sorsogon only came in second at P10.5 billion, closely followed by Camarines Sur at P10.2 billion, Masbate at P4.5 billion, Camarines Norte at P3.3 billion, and Catanduanes at P2.5 billion.
Documents also showed that other areas got bigger infrastructure funding than Casiguran, indicating that the municipality was not given any special treatment.
Earlier, House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. questioned the P325.11-million allocation for flood management programs in Casiguran alone as well as the P10-billion infrastructure funding for Sorsogon.
Andaya claimed the municipality cornered the funding through the clout of Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno. Casiguran Mayor Edwin Hamor and Vice Gov. Ester Hamor are the parents-in-law of Diokno’s daughter. Maricel V. Cruz
The amount in question for Casiguran actually covers five projects, namely the construction and rehabilitation of the Himaoyan flood control (P75 million), the Lungib seawall and embankment (P80.11 million), the Somal-ot seawall and embankment (P100 million), the Cagpagol river control (P45 million), and the Suji river control (P25 million).
In Andaya’s own hometown, the 1st district of Camarines Sur, P771.82 million was allocated for road widening projects for five primary roads and one tertiary road.
In the second district of Camarines Sur, for flood management projects similar to those in Casiguran, the area was allocated P858 million for the construction and rehabilitation of various flood mitigation structures.
Albay’s second district also had a funding allocation of P768 million while its special support program that covers projects aimed at promoting tourism destinations and economic zones got P665.48 million.
Road widening projects in Masbate’s third district, on the other hand, was allocated P481.7 million while flood management projects in Camarines Norte’s second district received P488.65 million.
Earlier, Malacanang took up the cudgels for Diokno amid the incessant attacks from Andaya and other lawmakers.