MALACANANG  WELCOMED  HOUSE  DECISION  TO  ABOLISH  PORK  BARREL

MALACANANG,  September 13, 2004
(OFFICE OF  PRESS SECRETARY)
Malacañang today welcomed a move by the House of Representatives to scrap the pork barrel starting with the 2005 General Appropriations Bill.

Press Secretary and concurrent Presidential Spokesman Ignacio R. Bunye said in a radio interview this morning that the lawmakers’ decision to abolish their pork barrel was a gesture of their willingness to share the burden that the country’s present fiscal situation required.

During an all-party closed-door caucus Tuesday called by Speaker Jose de Venecia, Jr., House leaders agreed to drop the pork barrel system and adopt the line-item budgeting to promote full transparency in the utilization of executive and congressional allocations.

Bunye, however, stressed that the passage of the eight tax measures proposed by Malacañang was urgently needed for the country to avert a looming fiscal crisis

"We need to pass those eight revenue measures, strengthen the tax collection system and pursue the fight against corruption," Bunye explained.

"That’s the total picture. These are the comprehensive solutions to our problems," Bunye added.

The House’s move is the chamber’s response to the government’s call to rally behind massive efforts to lessen government expenditures and generate savings.

Malacañang has submitted eight tax measures to the House designed to bring down the budget deficit and reduce borrowings.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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