By Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas S. J.
As early as 1994, the constitutionality of the pork barrel, then called the Countrywide Development Fund (CDF), was challenged on the ground of violation of the rule that, although appropriating money is the function of Congress, spending it is the prerogative of the executive branch.
By Amando Doronila
The House of Representatives eliminated on Saturday the controversial P25.4-billion Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) from the P2.268-trillion national budget for next year in a token and farcical response to widespread public clamor for the total abolition of the corruption-ridden pork barrel system.
By Cielito F. Habito
I am personally impressed at how the Department of Budget and Management under Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad is now taking politically unpalatable but long-warranted reform directions. As such, he demonstrates strong political will and firmly grounded principles, qualities now seemingly rare in public service. For these, he has been awarded the Metrobank Foundation Professorial Chair on Good Governance at Ateneo de Manila University. He recently delivered his professorial chair lecture titled “Pursuing the Aquino Administration’s Agenda for Empowerment Through Public Expenditure Management” to an appreciative multisectoral audience—so appreciative that some declared him a worthy “presidentiable” in 2016.
The cash gifts controversy enveloping the Senate has forced it to take a long hard look at its practices. The recent harsh exchange of words on the Senate floor between Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Senate Minority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano may have dragged the chamber’s reputation through the gutter, but if the flurry of acts and statements from various senators in the last several days is any guide, we may yet look forward to not only a cleaned-up Senate, but a clean slate.
By Conrado de Quiros
Comes now Miriam Defensor-Santiago to set the record straight. Or to remind her countrymen of what they already know. Or to put back in shape the history that someone has tried violently to twist.