By the OpinYon Research Team
Are members of President Benigno S. Aquino’s family of officials serving the interests of the country? Some in the President’s cabinet are loyal to the country. Some are likely serving business interests, like Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Albert Ferreros del Rosario and Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras.
In the case of Almendras, his alliance with Senator Sergio Osmeña on the energy crisis that the country is facing is an open secret. Almendras, former DOE head until his transfer to his current post as cabinet secretary, is known to be the inside guy of the Aboitiz business group, while Sen. Osmeña is married to a Lopez sibling. Both Aboitiz and the Lopezes are big players in the power sector.
Almendras and Osmeña, despite their pro-people posturings, fail to fool the people of their true color. But at least, they have not led us to an almost shooting war with a superpower.
In the case of del Rosario, OpinYon brings you back to 2012, when we almost went to war against China. Here, the OpinYon research team picks up a “secret” leak sent to us.
The Scarborough Incident
Last April 2012, tensions arose around Scarborough Shoal when Philippine Navy and Coast Guard vessels had a stand-off with Chinese Marine Surveillance vessels.
Although the situation eventually normalized after a couple of months, the fiery exchange of rhetoric between the two countries continue. Leading the charge on the side of the Philippines is none other than its Foreign Affairs head, Secretary Albert del Rosario.
While Sec. del Rosario reaped praises for his patriotic stance against a rising superpower, information about his true motives, however, started leaking out.
What is Sec. del Rosario’s true agenda? Is he truly a patriot?
In a meeting in Malacañang sometime in early May 2012, Secretary del Rosario was asked by President Aquino, who authorized the trip of Manuel V. Pangilinan (MVP) to China to talk to Chinese officials?
Secretary del Rosario owned up to the responsibility when he said that he “sort of encouraged Pangilinan to go and open another channel to China through the private sector since the political channel has failed.”
However, instead of talking to Chinese officials to defuse the situation in Scarborough Shoal, MVP talked to the China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) officials to pursue personal business interests. His report to the President is detailed in the following Aide Memoire:
Manny V. Pangilinan is the chairman of Philex Mining, which owns 65 percent of Philex Petroleum, which in turn owns 60.49 percent of Forum Energy.
Forum Energy owns 70 percent of the Service Contract 72, a seven-year exploration contract in the Reed Bank awarded by the Philippine government in 2010. By August 2013, it is committed to dig two wells in Sampaguita under its work program with the government.
Based on the estimate of Forum Energy PLC in 2011, the Sampaguita field contains 2.6 trillion cubic feet of contingent in place gas resource and 5.5 TCF of prospective in place gas resource.
The Del-Rosario-MVP Connection
Sec. Albert del Rosario has been involved in companies run by MVP, being director of the Philippine First Pacific Co. (Hong Kong), PT Indofood Sukses Makmur Tbk, the largest food company in Indonesia; Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Philex Mining Corp., Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., Metro Pacific Tollways Development Corp., Manila North Tollways Corp. and ABC Development Corp.
Sec. del Rosario has headed the development of Pacific Plaza Towers, Metro Pacific Corp.’s signature project. He is said to have introduced Pangilinan to the Salim family of Indonesia, which is behind First Pacific.
MVP as chairman and chief executive officer of Philex Mining Corp, owns 74.79 percent of Philippines Petroleum Corp. Philex Petroleum owns 64.45 percent of Forum Energy Plc. (FEP), an oil and gas exploration company incorporated in the United Kingdom with focus on the Philippines.
Forum Energy has secured a two-year extension from the original deadline of August 2013 for its work program under Service Contract 72 in light of the territorial dispute between Philippines and China.
In December 2012, DOE announced that it has deferred to the Department of Foreign Affairs the decision to grant permits concerning the exploration and drilling activities at the highly contested Recto (Reed) Bank because the area was part of the disputed waters being claimed by China.
In short, the go signal for the drilling activities of MVP’s Forum Energy lies in the hands of his best friend, Secretary Albert del Rosario.
(SOURCE: http://business.inquirer.net/104849/oil-drilling-group-gets-2-year-extension; http://www.interaksyon.com/business/50708/doe-serves-notice-that-oil-gas-projects-in-contested-territories-would-face-delays)
Why is MVP, through Sec. del Rosario, delaying the exploration drilling of Service Contract 72?
Sec. del Rosario is using the tension in Scarborough Shoal as a pretext to suspend the exploration drilling of SC 72. However, in light of the fact that the situation in Scarborough has normalized, plus the fact that MVP’s Forum Energy is in partnership with CNOOC of China, then obviously this is not the true reason for the delay.
What now is the real reason for the delay?
Findings of US Energy Information Administration
Several countries have overlapping territorial claims to portions of the South China Sea, which stretches from Singapore in the southwest to Taiwan in the northeast. The Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands are two of the most contested areas (see dark blue islands on map above). However, unlike other parts of the South China Sea, these areas have not been assessed to hold large (conventional) resources of oil and natural gas. Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, ownership of habitable islands can extend the exclusive access of a country to surrounding energy resources.
EIA’s analysis shows that most fields containing discovered oil and natural gas are clustered in uncontested parts of the South China Sea, close to shorelines of the coastal countries, and not near the contested islands. Industry sources suggest almost no oil and less than 100 billion cubic feet of natural gas in proved and probable reserves exist in fields near the Spratly Islands. The Paracel Island territory has even less natural gas and no oil.
(SOURCE: US Energy Information Administration, http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm?id=10651)
In addition to proved and probable reserves, the South China Sea may have additional hydrocarbons in underexplored areas. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) estimated in 2012 that about 12 billion barrels of oil and 160 trillion cubic feet of natural gas might exist as undiscovered resources in the South China Sea, excluding the Gulf of Thailand and other adjacent areas. About one fifth of these resources may be found in contested areas, particularly in the Reed Bank at the northeast end of the Spratly Islands, which is claimed by China, Taiwan, and Vietnam. These additional resources are not considered commercial reserves at this time; extracting them may not be economically feasible.
(SOURCE: US Energy Information Administration, http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm?id=10651)
Based on the above, it is clear that it is in the interest of business partners, MVP and Sec. del Rosario, to delay the drilling in SC72 (Reed Bank) because Forum Energy had bloated the gas and oil reserve estimates of SC72 (2.6 trillion cubic feet of contingent in place gas resource and 5.5 trillion cubic feet of prospective in place gas resource) and, therefore, had grossly overvalued their stocks.
Once the drilling starts, the true value of the reserves in SC72 would be known and MVP’s partners/stockholders at Forum Energy would start bailing out. MVP stands to lose billions.
This explains the antagonistic stance of Sec. del Rosario (through DFA) towards China. He just needs a continuing pretext to delay the drilling until MVP finds an unwitting buyer of their stake and leave their other partners/stockholders holding the empty bag.
Sec. Albert del Rosario is no patriot after all.
By Linggoy Alcuaz
At the end of last week’s Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow column, I greeted Pastor “Boy” Saycon a “Happy Birthday!” The title of my Monday, July 7, column was “Quintessential Operator! Strange Bedfellows!” Boy is the Quintessential Operator. Strange Bedfellows are the people we meet at Boy’s parties as well as in Philippine Political History.
The Devil, I did not meet, but I heard about, also at the same party, from Melvin Mitra, Boy’s “Masa” operator. Its initials are “PPP”. Those stand for three words that may compose the name of Vice President Jejomar Cabauatan Binay’s new political party. Those letters are also the initials of Manuel Manahan and Raul S. Manglapus’s Third Force Political Party in the 1957 and 1965 Elections.
The main point that I was trying to get across to my audience or readers in my last two columns was that even Strange Bedfellows have to get together. That is, if they want to advance, progress, succeed and win. My YTT column for Monday, June 30 (two weeks ago), was entitled “Ides of July! Confluence of Events! Strange Bedfellows!” It hinted that a period of opportunity is unfolding.
Thus, in the realm of my advocacy and proposition, the devil is the “Purist”. My example of the Purist was the 1957, 1959 and 1965, PPP/GA/PPP Campaign and Election Run of the Third Force. At that time, at my tender young age, I belonged to and supported them. I’m not a “Balimbing” and Opportunist in the fashion of Mediaman turned Politician Ben Evardone. I’m not afraid of struggling and losing.
However, I believe in struggling and trying over and over again. I believe in consistently doing better and eventually winning. I have won many times – 1953 (Magsaysay), 1961 (the Grand Alliance coalesced with the LP in the United Opposition Party (UNO).), 1984 (The election of region wide Assemblymen for the Interim Batasan Pambansa. The Opposition won a majority of the twenty one seats in Metro Manila or the National Capital Region.), 1986 (EDSA I), 1987, 1988, 2001 (EDSA II), 2010 (PNoy) and 2013 (Erap).
The Left has been trying since 1930 but have not yet won. However, they have survived WW II and eight and a half decades of constant struggle. They have survived mergers (The “Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas and the Socialist Party of the Philippines pre WW II merger.) and many splits. They have been instrumental in and participated in ousting and installing two sets of Presidents – Marcos and Aquino in 1986 through EDSA I and Estrada and GMA in 2001 through EDSA II.
The problem with the PPP/GA/PPP – 1957/1959/1965 attempts was that instead of improving their position with every attempt, the reverse happened. They lost by bigger and bigger percentages or proportions with every attempt. In the context of the 1935 Constitution’s Two Party Presidential System (from 1935 to 1972), the first objective or step for the Third Party was to challenge and contest the strongest Opposition Party for its privileges, rights and status, specially the Dominant Opposition Party Inspectors in the Boards of Precinct Inspectors. Once this was accomplished, it would be much easier to challenge the Administration or Incumbent Party. And so, it was a matter of first things first.
And so the prejudicial question is, “Should the Leading Presidentiable for 2016 and the Upset (over MAR and Loren) Vice Presidential Winner for 2010, organize a new party that will have the same Initials as the loser Third Force Parties of the 50’s and 60’s?” The big differences are that the 1887 Constitution decreed a Multiparty Presidential System and did away with Government paid Election Inspectors. Thus, the connection may be more symbolic than real.
It may be good for VP JCB to establish the connection with the old PPP’s as the Reform Experiments as well as Uncle Sam’s protégées. Jojo may have too much of an Activist, Human Rights and Leftist Image and Roots. However, of all of us First Quarter Stormers, both Moderate and Radical, Jojo is the most successful Trad Pol Convert. Why not try to show that he is a wolf with the heart of a lamb.
On the other hand, it may be good also to display to the Americans that he is trying hard despite his Radical Youth to take shelter under the Eagle’s Shadow. After all, unlike the typical government official who is content to take a short course at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Jojo has been back and forth to the USA taking these short courses in several schools. Perhaps the idea was to acquire as many classmates who might become future influential US government officials.
However, let us go back to the Strange Bedfellows at Boy’s Birthday Party at the Pastor’s Gastro Pub (sandwiched between the GSIS and the PNB along the Diosdado Macapagal Highway). I first took notice (at the Makati Sports Club) of Pastor “Boy” Saycon during FVR’s Lakas-NUCD-UMDP 1992 Presidential Campaign. However, I was with 1992 cheated Presidential Candidate Miriam Defensor Santiago and her husband, Narciso “Jun” Yap Santiago, and the Philippine Reform Party (PRP) from 1992 to 1995.
I really met Boy when I joined GMA’s KAMMPI in 1997. I have been going to his Birthday Parties since 1998 except when they fall on a weekend. My son Manuel, “Mikko’s” birthday also falls on July 8 since 1975. Fortunately for Boy, when Mikko’s Birthday falls on a weekday, we celebrate it on a Saturday or Sunday and are free to attend. Boy has turned the celebration of his parties into a political art of sorts.
From 1998 until 2004, his parties were held at his Ayala Alabang home. In 2003, Danding Cojuangco who was contemplating running for President again in 2004, was the star of the party. In 2005, his birthday coincided with the Hyatt Ten defection. We had a big rally in Makati that could have led to toppling GMA if FVR and Joe de V, had not stood by her. After the Ayala Ave. rally, I drove alone to Ayala Alabang to find a dark and lonely home without a party. The party was at the UCC in Ft. Bonifacio.
Since then, Boy has held his Birthday Party in various other places: his condo at Boni Ridge, a Chinese Restaurant in Ermita or Malate, at the top floor of the Fully Booked Bookstore at Boni High Street, a Tent at the Reclamation area near EDSA and MOA and finally, his very own restaurant – Pastor’s Gastro Pub.
In the years after “Hello Garci”, disgruntled military and police officers populated his parties. In the years before the 2010 Presidential Elections, Manny Villar, Loren Legarda and Alan Peter Cayetano were permanent fixtures. In 2010, a week after Noynoy assumed office, Iggy Tuason Arroyo was one among a thousand guests. In 2011 at Le Pavillon PMAP’s Ronald Lumbao put in an appearance. (To be continued)
Editorial cartoon by Sonny Boy Surnit
PERHAPS Ferdinand Marcos had good reason to abolish Congress back in 1973.
With the extent and amount of thievery in Congress and the plunder of public funds reaching unbelievable proportions and spanning several decades, there is more than enough reason to shut down the operation of what critics and a newspaper columnist-magazine publisher describe as the “largest crime syndicate” of the land.
Throughout history, Congress has seen several evolutions and shifts from a unicameral to bicameral system. Marcos abolished Congress in January 1973 with a shift to the parliamentary system of government and the bicameral system was only reintroduced in February 1987 after Corazon C. Aquino assumed the presidency with the ouster of Marcos.
The primary role of Senators and Representatives is—supposedly—to draft and pass laws for the advancement of the nation and the protection of its people. Lawmakers are not supposed to have direct access to public funds. Well, not until the creation of the controversial Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).
Originally called the Countrywide Development Fund (CDF) in 1990, the PDAF is designed to allow legislators to fund small-scale infrastructure or community projects which fell outside the national infrastructure program—which was often limited to large infrastructure items. But over the years, the PDAF has been used for things other than countrywide development. It’s been used as a tool for blackmail, coercion as a reward for political loyalty and has been the object of plunder.
Currently, each of the 24 senators has access to PhP200 million in PDAF while the 289 or so representatives receive PhP70 million a year. In total, some PhP25.03 billion of the national budget goes to our honorable men and women in Congress.
Public outcry over the CDF led to reforms in the CDF and its evolution into PDAF. But nothing has changed. The PDAF remains prone to administrative abuse and plunder. And we’re not even talking about the Disbursement Acceleration Package (DAP), which is a different matter altogether but also involves the possible misuse of billions in government money.
PNoy and his administration is in deep trouble. Maybe it’s time to do an FM.
A CASE of ham acting and bad theatrics.
This is how the opposition and critics of the administration described President Benigno Aquino III’s decision to reject the resignation of Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad despite the plunder complaint filed against the latter over the controversial Disbursement Accelerated Program (DAP).
On Friday, Aquino announced his decision to turn down Abad’s resignation submitted Thursday. Abad and several administration officials are in hot water after the Supreme Court declared part of the government’s DAP—created by Department of Budget and Management Circular 541—as unconstitutional.
And, to fortify its “in good faith” defense, former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban went on national television saying Abad and Aquino could not be held accountable for violating the Constitution as proponent and executor of the DAP—unless it is determined that they are guilty of “culpable violation of the law”.
Almost instantly, social media and the news networks were flooded with adverse reactions.
“It’s a bad day for good governance, Navotas Rep. Tobias Tangco, secretary-general of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), said in a text message describing Aquino’s retention of Abad. “I am waiting for them to sing ‘If We Hold on Together’”.
Renato Reyes, head of the militant group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, called Aquino’s decision to keep Abad in the Cabinet as a “stubborn defense” of DAP. He said the rejection “shows that the President is still in a state of denial regarding the illegality of the DAP. He is protecting Abad and in turn protecting himself.”
For his part, ACT Teachers party-list Rep. Antonio Tinio said Abad should have submitted an irrevocable resignation if the Cabinet official was sincere about taking responsibility for the DAP. “This is merely theatrics meant to ease pressure on himself and Malacañang,” Tinio said in a statement.
“As chief executive, President Aquino swore an oath to preserve and defend the Constitution and execute the laws of the land. This includes respect for and compliance with jurisprudence as embodied in Supreme Court ruling. In loudly and publicly rejecting the ruling on DAP, he is breaking his oath of office,” Tinio added.
Also on Friday, the Senate committee on finance has summoned Abad to make a public accounting on how the Aquino administration spent billions of pesos in public funds released under the Disbursement Acceleration Program.
Senator Francis Escudero, the chair of the Senate panel that examines the proposed national budget, asked Abad to appear before a public hearing scheduled July 21.
Escudero directed Abad to submit to the Senate panel the complete list of the all the Special Allotment Release Orders or SAROs that were disbursed under the DAP, including “projects/purpose and the amount of the releases. This is what we have been asking the DBM too since our last committee hearing: where is the list?” Escudero said in a statement.
Abad has not issued any statement on the DAP since it has been declared unconstitutional.
Meanwhile, impeachment complaints against Aquino have meanwhile been submitted to the House of Representatives, which administration congressmen vowed to block.
Described as a “stimulus package to fast-track public spending and to push economic growth on high impact budgetary programs, activities and projects”, the High Court gave three reasons for declaring the DAP unconstitutional: the withdrawal of unobligated allotments from the implementing agencies and the declaration of the withdrawn unobligated allotments and unreleased appropriations as savings prior to the end of the fiscal year and without complying with the statutory definition of savings contained in the General Appropriation Act (GAA); the cross-border transfers of the savings of the executive department to augment the appropriations of other offices outside the executive; and, the funding of activities, projects and programs that were not covered by any appropriation in the GAA.
The Supreme Court also voided the use of “unprogrammed” funds in the absence of a certification by the National Treasurer that revenue collections exceeded revenue targets.
Aside from serious concerns about its legality and propriety—of being used as presidential pork barrel for patronage purposes, particularly the impeachment of former Chief Justice Renato Corona—the DAP has also been described as economically irrational which is consistent with the notion that the supposed stimulus effect is only a cover for self-serving political agenda.
According to the research, education and development institution Ibon Foundation, the practice of using government spending to stimulate or pump-prime the economy in a situation of low demand is well-established. But to generalize from this and claim that any and all government spending is a stimulus to the economy would render the practice tautological and meaningless.
In a report, Ibon said certain conditions need to be met for the spending to be a genuine stimulus. The most basic is that the quantity of spending must be large enough and occur within a short enough period to actually make a discernible difference. The quality of spending also matters and this should be on items that will have the most immediate and greatest multiplier effect on the economy. Notwithstanding all the justifications that the administration has raised, the DAP did not meet either of these and the so-called stimulus argument is weak.
When questions about the DAP first surfaced, President Aquino claimed that the program stimulated the economy in 2011 and created a momentum that carried on years after.
When the controversy first came out President Aquino himself claimed that the DAP stimulated the economy in 2011 and created a momentum that continued until years after. PNoy also specifically said that the DAP contributed 1.3 percentage points to the growth in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP)in the fourth quarter of 2011; this is considerable considering that growth in that period was just 4.0 percent as reported by the National Statistical Coordinating Board (NSCB). Since the brouhaha, government has released varying, incomplete and inconsistent statements on DAP, but there is nonetheless not enough information to make a sound conclusion.
Early reports from the DBM had total DAP spending of P159.36 billion broken down into P85.53 billion (2011), P58.70 billion (2012) and P15.13 billion (2013). But these DAP magnitudes are not additional to the spending programs for the respective fiscal years of P1,580.0 billion (2011), P1,829.0 billion (2012) and P2,005.9 billion (2013); these figures coming from the latest Budget of Expenditure and Sources of Financing (BESF) documents.
It is therefore important to note that the DAP did not provide additional government spending for any of the years it was implemented and was just, as the acronym suggests, merely an acceleration of the disbursement of budget that were already established under the GAA. This fact makes it grossly inaccurate to claim the DAP as a stimulus package as it did not introduce additional appropriations into the budget, but only changed the manner how these amounts were spent by changing the actual expense items through various means which the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional.
Ibon further notes that the DAP was not that all significant. Total government spending – computed as the sum of government final consumption expenditure (GFCE) and public construction from the national accounts measured at current prices – in those same years was P1,132.67 billion, P1,376.10 billion and P1,558.24 billion, respectively. This means that the DAP was just 7.6 percent of total government spending in 2011, 4.3 percent in 2012 and 1.0 percent in 2013. Measured versus the economy the DAP was just 0.9 percent of GDP in 2011, 0.6 percent of GDP in 2012 and 0.1 percent of GDP in 2013.
So even at its peak in 2011, the DAP could not have had any substantial impact on the national economy. The Ibon report even proceeded to compare the DAP with equivalent figures of more genuine stimulus programs. For instance, the US government’s stimulus program – consisting of the $787 billion US economic recovery package of 2009 and $700 billion in Troubled Asset Relief (TARP) funds, unemployment insurance, health care—was, if spent as programmed—equivalent to about 20-30 percent of total annual federal outlays and some 4-6 percent of the US economy.
Meanwhile, stimulus packages in other countries in 2009 were also similarly large or larger, such as: Malaysia (7.9 percent of GDP), China (4.8 percent), Spain (4.5 percent), Germany (3.4 percent), Thailand (2.8 percent), Korea (2.7 percent), Indonesia (2.5 percent) and Japan (2.2 percent).
Still, to claim the DAP accounted for 1.3 percentage points of the 4.0 percent GDP growth in the fourth quarter of 2011 would have been meaningful if true, because then it would have accounted for more than one-fourth of the economic growth. But again, this 1.3 percentage point contribution to was not actually just of the DAP but rather of total government consumption and public construction for the period (of which the DAP was just a small part of). The contribution of DAP-related spending to economic growth is likely just one-fourth of a percentage point at most in the fourth quarter of 2011 and less than a tenth of a percentage point for 2011 as a whole.
But since there is no accounting yet of how the DAP was spent, it could even be possible that for it to have reduced the contribution of the national budget to economic growth. If it is true that portions of the DAP were lost to corruption or for bribing lawmakers to vote for the removal of Chief Justice Corona, it is possible that instead of being spent in the real economy the DAP has been lost to hidden bank accounts here—or even abroad.
With the DAP dwarfing the amount of money involved in the PDAF scandal an immediate accounting of where and how it was spent is required if Aquino and company want to come clean and get themselves out of the public crosshairs.
Problem is, there is no available information of the criteria applied by the government in deciding which projects to fund through the DAP or how it chose which projects to in effect discontinue by realigning funds away from them. A complete listing of the project also remains unavailable and a cursory glance of what projects have been made public is more than enough to cast doubt on how the administration utilized the funds which is several-fold bigger than the amount involved in the PDAF scandal.
Included in the items of alleged prima facie dubious stimulus impact are: PhP30 billion capital infusion to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP); PhP8.6 billion for Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) peace and development interventions; PhP5.4 billion in landlord compensation; PhP3.4 billion in GSIS premium payments; PhP1.8 billion for the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF); PhP1.5 billion for the Cordillera People’s Liberation Army (CPLA); PhP1.6 billion for the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) DREAM project; PhP1.1 billion for human resource development of BPOs; PhP750 million to settle the tax liabilities of the National Power Corporation; PhP666 million for the Department of National Defense (DND); and others.
The issue is not whether these identified expenditures are desirable, but if they have had any significant impact on the economy. The ultimate objective of any supposed stimulus package is to increase aggregate demand. The multiplier effect of any particular amount of government spending is however diminished if it is spent for foreign goods and services rather than locally, if it is not spent by the recipients, if it is not spent on labor-intensive projects, and so on. The situation therefore demands greater transparency on the part of the Aquino administration which is presently engaged in bringing the perpetrators of the PDAF scandal to justice.
A Cabinet secretary tendering his resignation and a President rejecting the same is simply not enough to address the issue and to calm the brewing storm.
By Miguel Raymundo
PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III’s Disbursement Acceleration Package (DAP) renders Congress useless. DAP is PNoy’s signature and declaration to the Filipinos that he has no need for Congress.
Filipinos spend tens of billions of pesos a year for salaries of congressmen and senators and to underwrite their stealing. Thievery in this Congress has gone too far that a weekly business magazine rightly described it as a crime syndicate.
Who needs a crime syndicate for a Congress? Even PNoy, by his acts, says he does not need Congress, except perhaps to impeach a Supreme Court Chief Justice.
Then will somebody please simply abolish Congress for failing the Filipino people for decades now?
First, Congress failed to protect the people from the biggest crime syndicate in the country led by the President himself.
The President misappropriated some PhP174Billion in forced savings from the budget of executive offices. He pooled these savings to form an illegal fund called the DAP. The Use of these savings is a product of technical malversation—a crime with defined penalties that include a jail term and dismissal from service.
This is PNoy’s biggest crime so far, a thievery ten times worse than that of the PDAF scandal supposedly masterminded by one Janet Lim Napoles.
While PNoy could be the most dishonest President this country has ever had by the magnitude of stealing now going on, his is a long list of dishonest acts from abandoning campaign promises to allowing subalterns to run away with billions of government funds.
PNoy promised us Daang Matuwid. With runaway corruption in the government service, no one but his yellow allies believed this. But of course Daang Matuwid meant a straight path of billions of pesos to the pockets and bank accounts of these yellow allies.
PNoy promised to wipe out poverty. Poverty incidence has gone up as we slipped deeper in international ratings on the measure of success in the fight against poverty.
PNoy said “Pag walang corrupt walang mahirap” and we see the reason why the “mahirap” has increased in numbers.
The people pay over P35Billion in keeping Congress. In return, Congress enacted insignificant laws, like in 2012 a bill on reproductive health and the postponement of elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, according to election lawyer Romulo Macalintal.
Every year, the only significant bill passed is the General Appropriations Act (GAA) or the national budget, the obligatory congress action to legalize government expenditure.
Under PNoy this GAA is not the bible in his spending, this is a scrap of paper that does not merit his attention or, worse, his respect. And, for circumventing the provisions of the budget and violating the Constitution, PNoy ought to go to jail.
According to Macalintal, the PhP35Billion savings from abolishing Congress could be used for other purposes.
But wait, should Congress be abolished, there will be absolute control of the purse by the executive branch.
Remember, Mr. Macalintal, the lawmakers are simply beneficiaries of theft by the executive branch. Remember that the process of stealing starts from Malacanang, passes through Congress and, finally, actually disbursed by the executive branches controlled by the Palace.
So Congress is just one step in the process of theft. Most guilty are those in the executive department, especially people in Malacanang.
Every step in the way in the disbursement of government funds has safety measures against acts of thieves.
I was the chief of budget division and management services division during the martial law days in one office attached to the Office of the President. I had this case of the top official ordering me to transfer funds from capital outlay to maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE).
I refused to obey the order, advising the boss it was technical malversation. I briefed him, thinking that being new the government service he did not know our duties. I told the boss this was against the law and I could go to jail if I followed his order.
The national budget defines how the government funds must be used, I told him and I have a duty to my position as budget officer. Of course I resigned few months after that briefing for too suddenly it became very hot in the kitchen.
The system is not rotten. The people in the system are. In solving the corruption in Congress, you don’t kill the system. The solution is for us to stop electing the corrupt to Congress.
Those elected and continue with their thieving ways should be charged in court and put to jail. That is assuming our justice system is working, but that is another story.
The presidential is system is not rotten. It is working fine in other countries like the United States of America. The person in the position makes the position of President rotten.
In the case of the Philippines, our President has shown how he has ruined the image of his position, being most guilty in the PDAF-DAP crime. He should be impeached for everyone to again respect our system.
He is the puppeteer, the one using government cash as strings in the public dance to massive corruption.
Now, if you think stealing from the government coffers is the only form of corruption hurting the economy so much, think again.
Yes corruption has hurt so much the economy that when PNoy and budget secretary Florencio Abad were pooling forced savings to create DAP, the GDP growth went down to half at over 3%.
The forced savings meant putting a stop to infrastructure projects and other people welfare initiatives, pulling out from the national spending over P170Billion.
The ripple effect of this dip in national spending was slow down of economic activities by suppliers to government projects and no jobs. Government spending is also intended to inject life to the economy, to create employment by direct hiring by government and suppliers. Downstream, even the sari-sari stores had to suffer. The net effect of reduced government spending is reduced cash in circulation, reduced disposable income of families.
In the dip in disposable income, government holding down disbursements of public funds has a temporary effect on disposable income. This dip is offset when the hijacked funds are released to fund massive corruption.
The worst source and reason disposable income is on the dive is the cost of basic necessities and utilities like food, power, water, transportation and others.
In the privatization of utilities, corruption in government is not noticed, this form of corruption deliberately moved away from public attention by the taipan-controlled mainstream media.
How bad business succeeds in bleeding dry the middle class and the poorest in this country is a long story of corruption in our congress and our President who is even more corrupt.
A year ago, this week, July 12-15, 2013, the PDI came out with a four part series on the Napoles PDAF/Pork Scandal. The PDI Expose came out of the three months “Serious Illegal Detention” of Benhur Lim Luy by Janet Lim Napoles and brother, Raynald “Jojo” Lim from Dec 19 to March 22. Then there were attempts (the retention of the MOST Law Firm and a letter to President Aquino from JLN seeking assistance against harassment by the NBI.) to cover up and hush up the said crime. Atty. Baligod and the Family of Benhur Lim Luy went to the PDI on April 27, 2013 and turned over Benhur’s Computer Hard Drive with 2,156 folders and 20,103 files.
Since then, we have been analyzing, projecting, wondering, what will be the end result of all of these. Our predictions and projections have swung back and forth, to and fro, principle to practical. A mere month and a half after the first PDI series, we thought that we were on the verge of another popular revolution (July 12-August 26). However, every month that passed since then, September, October, November, December and so on, the instant indignation and mobilization of July and August was disassembled and whittled down.
Even, the Tuesday, November 19, 2013, Supreme Court decision that PDAF was unconstitutional seemed to contribute to the pacification of public opinion. The proverbial final nail on the coffin was the paltry and pathetic June 12, 2014 Coalition or Movement Rally at the Bonifacio Shrine behind the Manila City Hall. Meanwhile, Bayan and other likely suspects held their rally at the Liwasang Bonifacio and proceeded to Mendiola after. The quantity as well as the quality of the Million People March to Luneta had been dissipated by Disunity, Dogma, Pride, Purism, Selfishness, Suspicion, and what have you.
Before you read on: Beware “Do Gooders”, “Holier Than Thous”, “Mayabangs”, “Pharisees”, “Purists” and Swapangs”. You might not like what you will read. Welcome “Balimbings”, “Half Breeds”, “Mestizos” “United Fronters”. Pray, keep your Hearts and Minds Open!
People are born, develop and grow up with two sides to the brain – Art and Science, Creativity and Logic, Language and Numbers, Love and Likes. My Left Brain must have been bigger. I was better with numbers than with language. However, in my late High School years and even more during College, my Right Brain caught up with my Left Brain and even overtook it. This was just in time for the 70’s as in the “First Quarter Storm!”
Subsequently, I realized that six decades of Politics and Protest taught me a new Political/Protest kind of Math. I learned that: 1 + 1 is not = 2, its 3. 10 divided into two is not 5 and 5, its 3 & 3. The other 4 just evaporated. I learned the value of Coalitions, Compromise, getting together and Unity. I learned too the other side of the coin, Disunity, Division, Dogmatism, Going It Alone and Purism.
Both at close range and from a distance, I learned about and observed political failure and success. One of the longest running political failures was the Jesuit/Ateneo inspired purist third force that fielded a separate slate of candidates in the National/Presidential Elections of 1957 and 1965 (PPP – as in Party for Philippine Progress and Progressive Party of the Philippines), and the Local/Midterm Elections of 1959 (Grand Alliance). Double blinded Noynoy (an Atenean like Manglapus.) may yet turn the success story of his parents’ double deaths and martyrdoms into the biggest family tragedy because of his narrow mindedness. On the other hand, we have had a myriad of political successes when even strange bed fellows got together. The following are examples of how the heterogeneous as opposed to the homogenous came about achieving their common objectives.
In 1946, the Liberator, Gen. Douglas Mac Arthur supported the Collaborator, Manuel Acuna Roxas for President. In 1953, the Nacionalista Party adopted LP President Elpidio S. Quirino’s Defense Secretary Ramon Magsaysay as its Presidential candidate. The latter had been an LP Congressman.
Then, in 1961, the Grand Alliance/PPP and the LP coalesced as the United Opposition Party (with Diosdado Macapagal and Emmanuel Pelaez for President and Vice President. Raul S. Manglapus and Manuel Manahan of the GA/PPP captured the first two slots for Senator.) and defeated the NP’s incumbent re-electionist President Carlos P. Garcia.
In 1965, former LP Congressman, Senator and Senate President Ferdinand E. Marcos won the NP nomination for Presidential candidate. With Fernando Lopez as his Vice Presidential running mate, they defeated the incumbent LP President Diosdado Macapagal and running mate Senator Gerardo “Gerry” Roxas. Senators Raul S. Manglapus and Manuel Manahan, the Purists, came in third.
In the 1970’s, Moderates and Radicals came together and came apart several times over. In the February 7, 1986, Snap Elections, Corazon “Cory” C. Aquino and Salvador “Doy” Laurel were perceived as having been the real winners because they had come together in one slate at the last minute.
In 1992, Lakas, NUCD and UMDP coalesced to field FVR. After he won the count and proclamation, Ramos made peace with all of his rivals, namely, NPC”s Danding Cojuangco, LDP’s Ramón V. Mitra, LP’s Jovito Salonga, KBL’s Imelda Romualdez Marcos and Unido’s Salvador “Doy”: Laurel, except for PRP’s Miriam Defensor Santiago. In 1995, in a Marriage of Convenience, Lakas and LDP put up a common twelve man Senatorial Slate.
In 1998, the LDP, LP, NPC, PDP and PMP coalesced behind Erap against the Lakas, NUCD, UMDP, Kammpi and defeated Speaker Joe de Venecia. However, the Kammpi’s GMA beat Angara for the VP. In March 2000, the Binamira’s, Pedrosa’s, Jun Enriquez and Linda “Inday” Montayre and Linggoy Alcuaz launched the Exclamation Point Sticker in the Silent Protest Movement. In the run up to EDSA II, Boy Saycon and Popoy Lagman, Peping S. Cojuangco and Vic Ladlad teamed up to Oust Erap. In 2004, Erap and Jun Enriquez got together. From 2004 to 2009, Orange and Red worked side by side.
From sometime in the past until November 29, 2007, the RA and RJ factions of the Left were often in the same coalitions. In 2007, Uno and GO defeated GMA and the Lakas’s Coalition at the Senatorial level. In 2013, Grace Poe ran under the LP and came out # 1. The future may show Pastor “Boy” Saycon and Erap together again.
All of these examples don’t mean that in this more complicated age that the strange bedfellows have to be formally together and united in their objectives to defeat the enemy. After all, as the lesson of the lost August 26 Million People March to Luneta shows, it is impossible to unite everybody. All they have to do is to aim their attacks at the same targets – Aquino and Abad, and not at each other. The Supreme Court Decision declaring the DAP unconstitutional lays the foundations for a common target range. The targets are now much bigger than Napoles of the Ten Billion Scam.
Happy Birthday Pastor Boy Saycon!
By Ronald Roy
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “hypocrisy” as the false assumption of an appearance of virtue or religion. There are disturbing reasons to believe that the much-touted daang matuwid (righteous path) slogan of Pres. B.S. Aquino lll qualifies as a shuddering example of the definition.
Good attracts while evil repels, and this explains the slogan’s proselytizing power. The Tagalog catchphrase is excellent political fodder for largely religious, fanatical, and superstitious Filipinos. They are, to a fault, easily beguiled by the slogan, the same way they are often finagled by quick-money operators who build bogus shrines and sell fake healing water.
Needless to state, the slogan’s large-scale deception is pernicious to our floundering democracy, and only our citizens, if reawakened and unshackled from the yellow camp’s “Rasputinean” enticements, can be their own saviors. However, most of us didn’t believe then Pres. Gloria Arroyo’s claim that God had ordered her to ignore the public clamor for her resignation because He wanted her to continue her good work for the country; so maybe there is hope P-Noy’s bewitching mantra will fizzle out.
But, is there? My persistent irritation is that: despite the president’s slowly diminishing popularity, his slogan still appears to be getting the better of us. Without rattling in public, he quietly seethes with anger whenever confronted by legitimate dissent. And he is good at appearing virtuous, notwithstanding his obviously undemocratic contempt for opposition leaders, vis-à-vis his overwhelmingly indecent defense of misbehaving political allies.
He is a bad sport. His kind of politics is dirty and foul-ridden; and if governance were a basketball game, he would have already been ejected and banned for life which, in reality, is a possibility now that the Supreme Court has unanimously declared DAP ( disbursement acceleration program) to be unconstitutional.
The sovereign people’s anguished cry for justice and restitution of their money has been heeded by the high tribunal, and this for the moment is a reassurance that our magistrates’ principal concern is the people’s welfare — a welcome reminder that the high court is the ultimate rampart for an oppressed citizenry, and that it stands ready to play an activist role to countercheck the abusive executive and legislative departments. But this is only the start of a long, daunting struggle.
As expected, impeachment of the president quickly came to the public psyche on the day of the official announcement of the tribunal’s resolution and, as of this writing, countless theories have evolved regarding its impracticality, futility and legal untenability, as bandied about by the Palace and its cohorts; and most likely, by the time this article’s been published, a number of impeachment complaints have already swamped the lower house’s impeachment committee.
Predictably, not one of them will prosper, impeachment being a political exercise, a numbers game, where P-Noy’s lackey, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, is in full control, not to mention the president’s bottomless kitty for political self-preservation. The DAP reportedly funded the removal of impeachment respondent CJ Renato C. Corona, and it is ironic that the high tribunal’s subject DAP decision now portrays his tormentor, President Noynoy, as having received a dose of his own medicine. Karma?
As I wrote in a previous article, do not expect P-Noy to fire DBM Sec. Butch Abad who is generally seen as the brains and/or orchestrator of the DAP. How could P-Noy, really, have the heart to dump Abad whose wrongful acts he had authorized or acquiesced to? However, a charge of Technical Malversation against Abad is being studied, according to Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales. Good move, although this could be a clever ploy that effectively diverts attention and pressure from P-Noy. Resignation? I do not think Abad will “take the bullet” for his master by stepping down. I hear this guy is a kapit-tuko of the kapal-muks variety.
So, what have we got before us? The spectacle, no less, of a graft-ridden administration on survival mode, fiercely banking on the power of its hypocritical daang matuwid to convince us: that we have a virtuous leader who rules the country with the best of intentions, by using our money for allegedly legitimate and noble purposes, and without pocketing a single peso, and that this declaration should be enough to shield him against accountability. HUH??? I disagree.
Their unbearably monotonous refrain of “good intentions” and “good faith” must now be laid to rest in the face of the Supreme Court’s statement that the Palace is not yet off the hook, not till the DAP’s sponsors can prove good faith.
Well, P-Noy and cohorts are finished, and here’s why. Senate records show that Sen. Noynoy sponsored a bill to outlaw the DAP because he saw it as an evil. But his colleagues rejected it. Therefore, he has been in bad faith all along. He should graciously resign if only to reduce the ignominy of being tagged as a hypocrite.
THE Aquino administration is in a quandary.
Shortly after putting senators Bong Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada behind bars for their alleged involvement in the PhP10-billion pork barrel scam and issuing a warrant against former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, government is now beset with a problem bigger than pilferage of the PDAF—that of the issue of the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) being declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
Designed as a stimulus package to fast-track public spending and economic and push economic growth—which was supposedly being hampered by a prevailing under-spending in government disbursements—President Aquino approved the DAP in October 2011 upon the recommendation of the Development Budget Coordination Committee and the Cabinet Clusters.
From its approval and throughout 2012-2013 government spent a total PhP142.23 billion in realigned savings from different government agencies on a total 116 DAP-funded budgets. And in declaring the practice to be in violation of the Constitution, the High Tribunal cites the culpability of the proponents and implementers of the illegal government program.
The chief architect of this budget impounding system is Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad, the same person whom some quarters have accused of orchestrating and providing tutelage to the players and con artists of the PDAF scam.
If the PDAF scam lists senators and congressmen as possible conspirators, the DAP tags the Office of the President—President PNoy—for approving a program that is against the fundamental laws of the land.
In defense, Malacanang said it “acted in good faith” when it spent hundreds of billions in public funds circumventing the provisions of the Constitution via the DAP. Also, being unconstitutional—in the words of Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda—should not be equated to criminality. Acting in good faith could be taken as the government’s admission of incompetence or an ignorance of the law, with both providing no excuse for the commission of an illegal act.
Because the DAP is very similar to the PDAF in many respects including the funding of projects identified by lawmakers, it is not easy to accept that the line that DAP was money well spent and the thievery was limited to the PDAF.
The PDAF involved an amount less than one percent of the total national budget and the DAP spending is ten times that of the money that Janet Lim Napoles and her co-accused were able to stick their fingers into.
If PDAF is just “pocket change”—Napoles and company are just petty thieves. An audit of the DAP and national budget could lead us to the big-time crooks and the smooth criminals in government.
By Ado Paglinawan
JOJO Binay is doomed.
His intentions for the presidency surfaced too early and unlike Cory Aquino, so to speak, he did not “keep his options open”. Because of this, his prospective run for the Presidency in 2016 is doomed from the outset.
Why? Because in a political atmosphere where corruption is key to being despised by the Filipino constituency, the bevy of his wife’s pending plunder cases await him at every corner.
He is able to maintain his Makati dynasty despite this Damocles sword because of the “controlled” political environment he inherited from the late former Mayor Nemesio Yabut.
I dare say if Yabut did not die in 1986 leaving a vacuum of leadership in that city just as Marcos had just left for Hawaii, there would be no Binay at all. Binay expanded the projects of Yabut in order to gain power and fame for his “entitlement” programs. I know because I was Yabut’s strategic consultant since he was first elected in 1971 to the time of his death. Only Yabut’s oldest son, King could have prevented the Binay ascendancy, but the boy did not challenge him and instead fielded his half-brother Toro Yabut to run for councilor.
That proved to be an irreversible error because when Toro had mayoralty ambitions and his half-brothers Ricky and finally King had theirs, Binay was already well-entrenched.
Only in Makati do the poor registered voters get free full medical care including hospitalization, laboratory work and pharmaceuticals and the non-poor are charged nominally according to their income brackets. Seniors have special privileges and go to movies for free and children are guaranteed free education up to college.
The police are well-equipped and provided for. There is a small sports complex in almost every barangay that also houses well-staffed councils that are ever-present in their respective territories making sure every resident or new resident of voting age are properly identified in their periodic census. Fire and emergency brigades also abound.
Again to clarify, Binay did not start these programs, he only expanded and added juice to them like a check for PhP1,000 every six months and a birthday cake for senior citizens. He has also issued a blue card for residents so that they become “arrest free” within the city.
This of course has a powerful appeal to non-Makati residents. In fact, it was even able to propel his obscure daughter to the Senate in 2013, despite her only experience being to count the weekly loot the Binay family gets from the exercise of their elective positions and laundry the filthy money into a foundation.
The reason for this was her daughter ran for one of 12 available positions in a campaign where name recall and TV advertising counts the most. Even Grace Llamanzares was severely way behind the polls when she had not yet added the magical surname “Poe” identifying her to her adoptive father of the late action king “Fernando Poe” to her “official nomenclature” as a candidate. And of course, Jojo Binay has all the cash to buy those lucrative TV spots.
Winning the Count
One may argue, however, that Binay won the vice presidency. Hello? Binay was never truly elected by the people. He came out with almost Php400 million to buy the position when Mar Roxas reneged on his contract with the Comelec “operators”, thus failing to protect his votes. Mar led by a long mile in 100% of all the pre-election surveys and exit polls. Binay lost the elections but won the count.
Like BS Aquino who is a digital president, Binay is a digital vice president, courtesy of Smartmatic and the corrupted automated election system. In fact, there is not a single public official in government today that has not been digitally elected.
Pending in the Supreme Court today are nullification cases that I have filed or helped file for the 2010 and 2013 elections.
So stop this romantic notion that Binay is electable. The dung his wife Elenita acquired when she left the city after her term as mayor ended will haunt him no end.
Binay does not even have ground troops outside of the Alpha Phi Omega and some cities that he has adopted as sister cities of Makati sharing with them some entitlements. His groundswell was just fictionalized in order to apply smoke and mirrors on how he bought his own election. But I am willing to concede to you if no one stops Comelec Chairman Sixto Brilliantes from reinventing Smartmatic into another automated cheating system for 2016.
By the way, the recent barangay elections were conducted manually. Are you aware of any electoral protests? The reason why the powers-that-be are addicted to automation is because it has made buying the presidential election a lot easier—you only have to corrupt the person who controls the system and you do not have to do any cheating anymore in more than 100,000 precincts nationwide.
That disputes your entire article about a dilemma because there is no dilemma. Binay must kiss the ass of BS Aquino who has Brilliantes in his tank in the same way the village idiot got elected in the first place.
Controlling the polls
BS Aquino controls the electoral system. Gloria Arroyo cleared Ronnie Puno to giving Pinky Aquino Abellada, Noynoy’s sister, the source code and thus control to the Smartmatic system on May 5, 2010 or five days before the 2010 elections.
The Arroyos are forever corrupt. Only God knows how much money changed hands, but soonest BS Aquino got proclaimed and sworn into office, he turned his back on Arroyo, propped up plunder cases against her and proceeded to put her behind virtual bars and effectively a hostage at the Veterans Memorial Hospital to keep her away from power politics.
BS Aquino got them by the balls and blackmail greed prevents them from squealing. Did you notice how Mike has confined the Arroyo defenses within the legal structures politics? Despite this “political persecution”, Arroyo’s Kampi and KGMA supporters complain no end that they cannot get any funds from the former president.
This fatal mistake has stuck to Gloria because she forgot Noynoy comes from a pedigree of quislings.
His maternal great grandmother stole the war chest of the Katipunan entrusted to her by General Antonio Luna. Her grandfather cheated the government and farmers in order to acquire and control Hacienda Luisita.
His paternal grandfather was a Japanese collaborator, and of course his own father was an agent of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) whose flipside spells IBM, for which her sister worked for. Remember how Ninoy Aquino used the New People’s Army against government in order to leverage the Americans?
Her own mother the former president but who was without a political machinery rode on the Unido coalition to win the presidency but who later betrayed Unido’s leader Vice President-elect Salvador Laurel whom she promised will serve as Prime Minister of the parliamentary form of government they inherited from Ferdinand Marcos.
In order to protect the gruesome relations of her husband with the communists, she released Jose Maria Sison and gave him safe passage out of the country.
And then to appease the US, whether CIA or IBM, Cory Aquino instead chose to rule under a revolutionary government and returned the government structure to the American presidential system that ended up accidentally deleting the two-party system that is causing all the schizophrenia in today’s Philippine governance.
There is no dilemma. Binay only has to pander to BS Aquino (and of course the Americans) and obediently serve as their altar boy.
The Americans are once again omnipresent in Philippine affairs, but I am not too sure they will agree to electing the first black Filipino president after it seems that the first black US president they twice put into office seems to be more interested in his ideology transforming the American political culture rather than serving their country’s national interest and the vested interests of the US establishment before that.
This is how complicated the situation is.
Some labor groups are not impressed with the arrests of senators Juan Ponce-Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla, as the arrests are seemingly selective, and at best, superficial.
Progressive groups under the banner of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) condemned the selective arrests of three members of the opposition by the Aquino administration, citing that it is only one of the government’s diversionary tactics to appease the angry masses in calling for accountability.
Youth group Anakbayan says that the administration’s tactic only aims to limit the scope of prosecution in the pork barrel scam.
“We can call for accountability all day long, but the Aquino administration will not give us genuine accountability, ” said Vencer Crisostomo, national chairperson of Anakbayan.
Aquino on the defensive for his allies involved in the alleged corruption cases are among factors on why genuine accountability will not happen under his administration.
Aquino is using all his power to contain the anger of the Filipinos and redirect them to members of the opposition involved in the scam while his involved allies enjoy the privilege of his protection.
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma stated that the palace has a “new media team” that collected the data on the negative impact of Sen. Bong Revilla’s speech on the internet.
Different organizations continue to point out how the administration is wasting the people’s taxes by collecting this kind of data which only aims to serve the interest of Aquino and his allies.