Palace prodded on ₧5-T 2022 national budget bill

- By Butch Fernandez @butchfbm

THE Executive department was reminded Wednesday on the need to prioritize funding economic recovery in the Palace-proposed P5trillion 2022 national budget to enable the country to quickly bounce back amid a lingering pandemic.

Sen.juan Edgardo Angara, chairman of the Senate finance committee tasked to review and endorse the annual budget for plenary approval, suggested an option for the Executive to adjust funding priorities following initial review of the annual budget bill.

Angara asserted the need for the Executive to have designed the national budget to ensure speedy delivery of programs and projects, not because the Duterte administra­tion is nearing the end of its term, but due to the crying need for government to effectivel­y ease the burden borne by the public ensuing from the pandemic.

The senator raised the lingering Covid-related concerns following reports on the P5.024-trillion proposed 2022 budget bill crafted by Malacañang’s economic managers is 11.5 percent higher than this year’s P4.5-trillion national budget.

Lawmakers learned that the proposed annual budget bill has been submitted to President Duterte for initial approval before its submission to Congress for enactment into law.

According to Angara, legislator­s are aware of the need to fast-track the annual money measure, more so now that the lingering pandemic, reported to have a “Delta variant” that quickly spreads, require funding to contain effectivel­y and avert its spread immediatel­y.

The senator also reminded the need to fast-track the vaccinatio­n drive and release the approved budget for the pandemic control efforts, adding that under the law, Malacañang needs to submit to Congress the proposed annual budget within 30 days from the time Congress convened sessions Monday, or until August 25.

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