Robie de Guzman
Malacañang on Tuesday insisted that the proposed increase for the budget of the Office of the President (OP) for 2020 is necessary to ensure effective delivery of public services.
Based on the proposed P4.1 trillion proposed 2020 national budget, the president’s office is asking for an P8.25 billion budget, which is higher than P6.7 billion appropriated for this year.
Most of OP’s proposed budget will go to maintenance and other operating expenses, including confidential and intelligence funds. The rest will go to personal services and capital outlay.
“The Palace reiterates that the increase in the budget of the Office of the President, where the seat of power and supremacy in government lies, is necessary to in order to provide efficient, meaningful and effective public service to the Filipino people,” presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said in a statement.
“In times of national emergencies and calamities, coupled with cries for help from all walks of life, and when the departments and agencies that provide basic services or responses to the public run short of funds, the OP steps in to extend a helping hand and augment whatever shortage there maybe in delivering the requisite assistance,” he added.
The presidential spokesman added that the additional funds will be used to protect the country from threats coming from sources within and outside the country.
“The intensified efforts of this government, with the Office of the President at the helm, against criminality and various perils against the Philippines’ security and sovereignty have indeed created a changed environment in our society where the people feel safe as they go about living their daily lives,” he said.
“We intend to maintain such an environment and even improve it in the remaining years of the Duterte presidency,” he added.
Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea earlier justified the huge increase on intelligence and confidential expenses of the president’s office for its efforts against criminalities in the country.
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