House ends OP budget hearing

Rodriguez thanked the House for its support for the OP, assuring that they would work with the legislature to promote public interest and nation-building.

Executive Secretary Vic Rodriguez on Friday morning paid a courtesy call on House Speaker Martin Romualdez, cousin of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF Office of House Speaker Martin Romualdez

September 3, 2022

Citing courtesy to its co-equal branch, the House Committee on Appropriations swiftly terminated the briefing on the P8.97-billion proposed budget of the Office of the President for the fiscal year 2023.

Seven minutes into the budget briefing, the panel, chaired by Ako Bicol Rep. Elizaldy Co, terminated the deliberations without any interpellation upon the motion of House Majority Leader Manuel Jose Dalipe, citing tradition and courtesy to the executive.

“By tradition, we are sending parliamentary courtesy to a co-equal branch in government. I move to terminate the budget briefing of the Office of the President,” Dalipe said.

This means that the panel will endorse the proposed budget to the plenary for another round of deliberations.

Executive Secretary Vic Rodriguez presented before lawmakers the OP’s proposed budget of 8,969,005,000 during Friday’s hearing.

It is 9.62 percent higher than last year’s budget of P8,182,033,000.

Seventy-nine percent of the proposed budget is allocated for OP’s operations such as the Presidential Oversight Program, Presidential Advisory Program, Presidential Legal and Legislative Services Program, and Presidential Executive Staff Services Program.

Meanwhile, the largest chunk of the budget will be allocated to support OP’s Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses.

The OP explained that the increase in its MOOE is due to an “increase in traveling expenses, both local and foreign due to the lifting of the travel restrictions, resumption of state visits, and compliance to international commitments.”
In September alone, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will travel to three countries: Indonesia, Singapore, and United States.

Planned training expenses

The OP added that the additional funds will be used for “planned training expenses that were not realized due to Covid-19 restrictions, increase in Internet subscription, and other subscription expenses, increase in fuel, oil, lubricants, materials and consumables, representation expenses and other expenses.”

MOOE is followed by personnel services at P1.501 billion, and capital outlay at P590.794 million.

Rodriguez thanked the House for its support for the OP, assuring that they would work with the legislature to promote public interest and nation-building.

“You can be assured that the Office of the President is here together with you, your honors, in meeting the expectations and hopes of the more than 112 million Filipinos which the President now leads, founded on a solid foundation of 31.5 million votes — more or less — in promoting the people’s welfare and upholding the interest of the nation,” Rodriguez said.

“We are one with you, your honors, in nation building.”

Also on that day, Rodriguez paid a courtesy call on House Speaker Martin Romualdez, the cousin of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., at the Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City.

Earlier this week, senators of the minority bloc expressed dismay over Rodriguez’s failure to attend the continuation of the Senate blue ribbon’s committee on the alleged illegal attempt to import 300,000 metric tons of sugar.

Senator Francis Tolentino, the panel’s chairperson, said Rodriguez has informed the body that he could no longer attend the succeeding hearings due to a hectic schedule, including the state visits of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.


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