MANILA — The three branches of the Philippine government were urged to consider the best interests of the country regarding the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) issue, a business group official said.
Peter Angelo V. Perfecto, executive director of Makati Business Club (MBC), told Philippines News Agency that after President Benigno S. Aquino III made his statement on DAP on national television Monday evening it is now clear for the public that the government’s savings benefited our countrymen.
“What we must give all pause in the continuing DAP chronicles is the fact that funds were actually used to electrify sitios, build more classrooms, and build more roads outside of the usual urban centers benefiting many Filipinos,” Perfecto said.
According to President Aquino, DAP allocated Php 1.264 billion for the sitio electrification program in 2012 in which 6,136 sitios benefitted from the said amount.
It also helped the Department of Education (DepEd) to eliminate the 66,800 classrooms backlog that were inherited from the previous administration, according to the President.
“The information has been made public and it is time that we understand and appreciate the facts better than before the President made his pronouncements,” said Perfecto.
He added that it will be prudent if the executive, legislative and judicial branches will work together on the country’s common goals to achieve inclusive growth and good governance, among others.
“Meantime, Malacañang is filing a motion for reconsideration and it may be wise for our three branches of government to carefully consider the best interests of the country and work together towards our common objective of good governance, inclusive growth, and peace and justice for all,” he noted.
The Supreme Court (SC) declared DAP as unconstitutional.
However, President Aquino during his national address insisted that there are provisions of the law that dictates the efficient spending of funds.
The Chief Executive cited Book VI, Chapter 5, Section 39 of the 1987 Administrative Code of the Philippines which says: Except as otherwise provided in the General Appropriations Act, any savings in the regular appropriations authorized in the General Appropriations Act for programs and projects of any department, office or agency, may, with the approval of the President, be used to cover a deficit in any other item of the regular appropriations.
“This law openly gives the President the power to transfer savings to other projects. It does not limit the transfer to only one department or branch of government. In other words: We did not transgress the law when we implemented DAP. The Constitution and the Administrative Code are not at odds with each other,” President Aquino stressed.
President Aquino reiterated that rolling out of DAP helped many Filipinos and improved the economy in which the World Bank, SC, and even critics of DAP admitted the benefits of the government savings.