Pangan: Parking of funds

ANOTHER corrupt practice of government agencies has been brought to light by Senator Alan Peter Cayetano and he urged the authorities to look into the malpractice of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) of "parking" funds for future retrieval in favor of "conceding" contractors.

Sen. Cayetano hinted at the existence of syndicates behind the illegal realignment of billions of pesos in funds in one of the largest departments for next year.

This practice has been going on for years and only favored contractors get big ticket contracts from the government in exchange for fat commissions from "referring" congressmen and DPWH insiders.

He said what is most alarming is the possibility that the fund manipulation is happening at the source, meaning the DPWH budget even before it is submitted to Congress.

He admitted that the manipulation named parking of funds has been a long-standing problem of government.

If this anomaly exists in the DPWH, it may also be thriving in the other agencies of the national government.

Even the Office of the Vice President is not spared the embarrassment with its provision in the 2023 budget of a 500 million confidential fund. Of course, opposition lawmakers raised a howl over its passage, saying past occupants of the OVP did not ask for such huge allocation for a dubious expenditure.

As a follow-through perhaps to my suggestion that the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management, Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, chairman of the House committee on constitutional amendments, filed a bill that would shut down the PS-DBM which has been hounded by allegations of improper procedures and overpriced acquisitions. Dapat lang.

This unit of DBM is perhaps the ultimate source of corruption and is manned by the heaviest of corruptors. Need to say more? The recent acquisitions of PPEs and other medical supplies proved the allegations of wrongdoing.

There are other departments in the national government which may be engaged in anomalous practices. Only time will tell when these can be exposed to the public scrutiny.


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