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Pork allegations unfair, misleading — Ungab 

The 2020 budget is pork-free, said Rep. Ungab. #2020nationalbudget

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Rep. Ungab (left) with Sen. Lacson. (IU)
House Appropriations Committee Chairman and Davao Rep. Isidro Ungab defended the recently approved 2020 budget bill saying the allegations labeling it as pork-ridden are “unfair” and “misleading.”  
 
In a statement, Ungab said all changes made in the General Appropriations Bill (GAB) were aligned with President Rodrigo Duterte’s priorities and were based on recommendations of government agencies. 
 
“In compliance with the express instructions of the President, the 2020 GAB contains no pork, no last-minute insertions and no parked funds,” Ungab said. 
 
“The Supreme Court has already declared pork barrel funds as unconstitutional and clearly defined what constitutes pork. The 2020 budget is pork-free,” he added. 
 
Before the bicameral conference committee approved the budget last Wednesday, Senator Panfilo Lacson claimed that House lawmakers made last minute insertions in the GAB.
 
According to Lacson, his office has received files from the House including a list of 742 projects worth P16.345 billion. The list was supposedly sourced from another list of projects worth P83.219 billion. 
 
Although the bicameral conference committee reconciled differences in the budget bill behind closed doors and only conducted two public meetings, Ungab said “the budget process was undertaken with utmost transparency.”
 
Ungab said the budget represents the clear 2020 vision of the President and his economic strategy anchored on increased spending in infrastructure and human capital development. 
 
“The projects outlined under the  2020 budget will help sustain our status as one of Asia’s best-performing economies,” he said. 
 
House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and Majority Leader Martin Romualdez earlier dispelled pork allegations and said budget that was passed has no pork and no parked funds.
p: wjg

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