Palace: Gov’t funds used to boost economic growth, not political campaigns

By , on June 3, 2014

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. answers questions from the media in a press briefing on Malacanang Friday when he advised people to remain vigilant until the exit of Typhoon Yolanda from the Philippine area of responsibility. He also commended the people along the typhoon path for heeding the call of the government to evacuate and take the necessary precautions as the typhoon approached.  (Photo by Robert Viñas/Rodolfo Manabat/Malacanang Photo Bureau)
Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. (Photo by Robert Viñas/Rodolfo Manabat/Malacanang Photo Bureau)

MANILA — The only campaign where government resources are being used is for the campaign to boost the country’s economic growth, a Malacanang official said on Tuesday.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr., in a Palace media briefing, made the statement in reaction to allegations that the government was using funds to campaign for the administration’s standard bearer for the 2016 presidential elections.

“The government’s resources are being used in the campaign to ensure sustainable and long-term economic growth, as well as inclusive growth, in accordance with the objectives of the Philippine Development Plan (PDP),” Coloma said.

“You can check against the updated Philippine Development Plan matrix and all of the projects are aligned with the main thrust of the PDP,” he added.

The PDP outlines the government’s five major guide posts: Anti-Corruption/Transparent, Accountable and Participatory Governance; Poverty Reduction and Empowerment of the Poor and Vulnerable; Rapid, Inclusive and Sustained Economic Growth; Just and Lasting Peace and the Rule of Law; and Integrity of the Environment and Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation.

Coloma further said that in his opinion, the country has never seen a more open and transparent government like today, because of the people’s clamor for openness and transparency.

Meanwhile, Coloma noted that the Aquino administration never took credit from any past administration’s contributions to the country’s economic growth, contrary to what critics claimed.

Critics reportedly said that projects under the current administration were merely “continuations” of projects in previous administrations.

“We are not taking the credit away from anyone. It is not important for the current administration to claim credit,” Coloma said.

“We don’t have a problem with who is the star or who gets the credit,” he added. “What is important to us are the benefits that can be acquired by our citizens.”