In a recent development, Marikina 2nd District Representative Stella Quimbo confirmed on Monday, September 25, that the Office of the Vice President (OVP), led by Vice President Sara Duterte, expended ₱125 million in confidential funds during 2022 within a mere 11 days, a considerably shorter duration than the previously reported 19 days.
During the plenary deliberations of the 2024 proposed budget of the Commission on Audit (COA) on Monday, House assistant minority leader Arlene Brosas of Gabriela raised concerns about the OVP’s utilization of ₱125 million in confidential funds from December 13 to December 31, 2022, as disclosed in the Statement of Appropriations, Obligations, and Balances (SAOB).
Brosas questioned, “Ayon sa mga nakaraang usapin, lumalabas na ginastos ng OVP ang halagang ₱125 million sa 19 days lamang na mukhang napakaiksing panahon. Maaari bang ikumpirma ng COA ang nangyaring ito?”
“Ang totoo po ay nagulat din po ako noong mabasa ko ang mga balita na tila nagastos po sa loob ng 19 days. Tinanong ko po ang COA at tiningnan ko po ang iba’t ibang mga reports, pero hindi po ito nagastos sa loob ng 19 days, kung hindi 11 days po,” responded Quimbo, who also holds the position of senior vice chairperson of the House Committee on Appropriations.
It was previously reported that the said fund was sourced from the Office of the President (OP).
In August of this year, members of the Makabayan bloc raised questions in Congress during the budget hearing of the OVP regarding the confidential funds. However, the Committee on Appropriations concluded the hearing prematurely, citing parliamentary courtesy.
The revelation made by Quimbo has sparked curiosity among netizens, who wonder about the potential ramifications of this information.
Welcome back to the young and beautiful you, Cong Stella haha https://t.co/5q7famBaqA
— Julliano Fernando Guiang (@julesguiang) September 25, 2023
Nakakalokah ito! Juice ko! BAka pwede namang tumayo at idepensa ng mga congressmen at senators ang pera ng bayan.
Otherwise, hindi naman mahirap ibigay o i-report ang listahan ng mga nagawa ng OVP. After all, sino bang gustong mapagbintangan ng corruption, di ba? 😥😥😥 https://t.co/gZc3IBBsCg
— ogie diaz (@ogiediaz) September 25, 2023
Napa “acheche!” si maam
— Ramon Bautista (@ramonbautista) September 25, 2023
Usec will answer the question. https://t.co/4QKfOppjRR
— Pari Koy (@pads_nosi) September 25, 2023
Paano mo gagastahin ang halos 11.4M per day? 125M ang ginastos sa loob ng 11 na araw?
Ilang classrooms na ang magagawa niyan, ilang teachers na ang na-hire, ilang ospital na ang natulungan sana.
Saan napunta yun at bakit kailangan gumasta ng ganon kalaking pera?
— raffy magno (@raffymagno) September 25, 2023
Hindi naman pala nagastos in 19 days. Nagastos pala in 11 days yung P125 million. That’s P11.3 million a day. 😬🤔 pic.twitter.com/hal4sC7bId
— Gerry Cacanindin (@GerryCacanindin) September 25, 2023
— The Stickman Chronicles (@StickmanPH) September 25, 2023
The OVP has proposed a ₱2.385 billion budget for 2024 and is requesting ₱500 million for confidential and intelligence funds.