ANGELES CITY -- Presidential candidate Senator Grace Poe denied Tuesday reports that she has no stand on the decentralization of powers and functions from the national government to the local government units.
During a press conference at Fortune Restaurant here, Poe said that her political team is for the local autonomy and devolution of powers to local governments.
This is in reaction to a statement issued by Australian businessman Peter Wallace that she has "no known stand on decentralization and reported to be pushing for Manila first, other regions later policy together with her runningmate, vice-presidential candidate Senator Chiz Escudero.
Poe said that she was surprised by Wallace’s statements. “Yung ang exact words niya? Hay, nagulat naman ako.”
During the recent general membership meeting of the Pampanga Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PamCham), Wallace showed local businessmen a chart of presidentiables with their corresponding stand on decentralization.
Poe, Mar Roxas, and Miriam Santiago, were said to have no stand regarding decentralization.
Vice-President Jejomar Binay and Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on the other hand were reportedly supporting the decentralization of powers to the LGUs.
Poe said that her group gives importance to the principle that no Filipino and place in the Philippines that will be left behind. “Ang importante sa amen, sa gobiernong may puso, walang maiiwang Pilipino at lugar sa Pilipinas.
She stressed that strengthening of local governments through devolution of powers, and prerogative over their internal revenue allotment (IRA). “Kung mayroon nga kaming paulit-ulit na sinasabe, ito ay ang pagpapalakas ng local government, devolution of powers at saka prerogatiba sa kanilang IRA (Internal Revenue Allotment) kung paano nila gagastusin at dapat palakihin pa nga ito.”
Poe added that the development of all regions is included in the group’s platform of government.
If elected president, Poe said they are also planning to give 30 percent of the national budget for various development projects in Mindanao.