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Rm. N-411, House of Representatives, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
+63 2 931 5497, +63 2 931 5001 local 7370

Appropriations Chairman Elizaldy Co engages in personal attacks instead of squarely confronting the constitutional issues on the questionable congressional allocation of an excess of P449,450,510,000 in unprogrammed appropriations over the President’s proposal of only P281,908.056,000.

In his response to the petition I filed before the Supreme Court challenging the infirm allocations, Co miserably failed to deny that:

  1. The bicameral conference committee on the 2024 General Appropriations Bill (GAB) furtively inserted an excess of P449,450,510,000 in unprogrammed appropriations.

    Said exorbitant increase is prohibited by the Constitution under Sec. 25 (1) of Article VI which categorically reads: “The Congress may not increase the appropriations recommended by the President for the operation of the government as specified in the budget.”

  2. This prohibition covers both the programmed and unprogrammed appropriations proposed by the President in the National Expenditure Program (NEP) as the Constitutions does not distinguish between programmed and unprogrammed appropriations.

  3. The bicameral conference committee report containing the infirm excess was ratified by the House and the Senate with alacrity without revealing or explaining the insertion.

  4. The excess in the unprogrammed appropriations contains pet and partisan projects which are proposed together with substantial projects and programs. 

  5. Co premeditatedly wanted the excess unprogrammed appropriations to be funded, released, and implemented by sequestering the purported excess funds or income of government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) as targeted in HB No. 9513, which he recommended for approval.

I have not forgotten that the practice of increasing the unprogrammed appropriations was the then-prevailing errant interpretation and practice wherein the prohibition on increasing the President’s budget proposal was limited to the programmed appropriations. 

I have not forgotten to categorically mention this incorrect interpretation and practice in the petition.

It is well-settled that irregular acts committed in the past cannot legitimize their continuation up to the present. What is wrong must be eventually junked.