Savings and bad omen?

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By Jun Ledesma


Saturday, July 19, 2014

HAVE you ever wondered why after all the raucous over the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) Malacanang has yet to come up with the list from where the so-called savings came from? 

If up to this time the palace has extreme difficulty in coming up with a list of purported projects that it claimed pumped prime the economy and funded by DAP the waiting I think would be for eternity. Submitting a litany of projects would not suffice.  DBM Sec. Butch Abad must reveal where the savings came from.

I am quite certain that once Abad comes up with the list of the savings it is not farfetched that a huge amount of money was for projects with approved Congressional appropriation that were either cancelled or suspended on mere suspicion that these were tainted with corruption.  


We ought to know whether there were projects intended for Mindanao in general and for Region 11 in particular which were cancelled, suspended and were never pursued and the money allocations were cavalierly pooled by DBM in what it now claims as "savings".

I too am quite certain that most, if not all, of the incumbent congressmen and senators are aware which of the projects that had been approved by the previous congress were cancelled or embargoed. The problem however is that Congressmen have been subservient to Malacañang because many had partaken of the largesse that was shelled out by DBM in various indecent undertakings carried out by this administration.

"Good intention" is bad reason especially when we are aware that billions of pesos in DAP funds (meaning savings) went to un-programmed projects. Alleging that the money was spent to aid Yolanda typhoon victims would not wash because even with the billions of foreign aid, the rehabilitation program has barely taken off the ground with thousands of homeless victims still living in tents. President Aquino’s claim that billions from DAP were released for the rehabilitation projects only tighten the noose around his and Abad's necks. It is plain fairy tale.

I don’t know what made President Aquino presumed that people which he, in cajolery, addressed as his “bosses”, would obey his rally for them to don yellow ribbon.  I do not know who were the bright boys…and girls…around him who gave him this piece of advice. It shows the degree of insensitivity and stupidity for them to believe the “yellow ribbon” hoopla would still stir mass appeal. It did not. What may emerge from this failed attempt would be black and red armed bands or ribbons instead.

The presidential effrontery in challenging the overwhelming decision of the Supreme Court that declares DAP as unconstitutional did not merit a bit of reaction from the magistrates.  Maybe the justices considered the President’s threat as a juvenile act and just passed this off as one. 

But, in hindsight, I suspect someone in the circle of the president must be orchestrating this legal gobbledygook that places him in bad light.

Secretary Abad for example should have submitted an irrevocable instead a pro-forma letter of resignation. If he is a good soldier he should have shielded the president by quitting and took the bullet too. But no, he and his colleagues allowed the president to be bombarded from all sides and, as if that was not enough, coached him to challenge the High Court and then threaten the magistrates!

Rage! Rage! Even super typhoon Glenda swerved from its path and raked through the National Capital Region. A huge acacia tree in the Malacanang grounds which survived stronger storms in the past was uprooted by Glenda.

A very bad omen indeed.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on July 19, 2014.


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