Budget review makes peacemakers less blessed

WHY did the Cebu City Government stop and then lower back to its original amount of P4,000 the P6,000 honorarium for the lupong tagapamayapa in the barangays?

According to City Budget Officer Marietta Gumia, the January 2016 honorarium of P6,000 was based on the approved annual budget for that year.

But by the time their honorarium for the following month was processed on April 4, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) had already declared the City’s budget inoperative.

A timeline of the events that led to City Hall lowering the amount of the monthly honorarium for the lupon was included in a letter Gumia sent to the City Council last Feb. 5, 2018. In the letter, the budget officer said the DBM issued the review declaring the budget inoperative last March 7, 2016, or a month before the honorarium for Feb. was processed.

“Hence, the amount of honorarium was changed back to P4,000 based on the calendar year 2015 re-enacted budget,” reads a portion of the letter.

The annual budget for 2016 was later revised by the City on June 28.

Gumia added that when the new administration assumed office, a new master list was issued, and the amount of P4,000 became the City’s basis since.

The issue on the honorarium for the lupong tagapamayapa was first raised during the council’s regular session last Jan. 30.

In an approved resolution drafted by Councilor Raymond Alvin Garcia, the council requested the Office of the Mayor and the City Budget Office for an explanation on the matter.

This came after the lupong tagapamayapa of Barangay Kalunasan sent Garcia’s office a letter asking City Hall to shed light on the matter.

During last week’s regular session, the council agreed to furnish Kalunasan and the Association of Barangay Councils with a copy of Gumia’s letter.

The lupong tagapamayapa mediate in minor disputes in the barangays as part of efforts to keep the courts from getting congested. (RTF)
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