SENATOR Alan Cayetano said last week that the Commission on Audit (COA) report exposing the “irresponsible and corrupt handling” of the Priority Assistance Development Funds (PDAF) by certain senators explains why the milestone 6.6 percent economic growth achieved by the Aquino Administration has not been felt by the people.
“The people that I have spoken with while I’ve been going around the country — farmers, fisherfolk, construction workers, market vendors — say that they have yet to feel the 6.6% economic growth achieved by the PNoy administration. Now we know that one of the reasons is that the funds that had been allocated for them by the government were diverted,” Cayetano said.
Cayetano, who was recently in Dagupan to consult the transport sector and fisherfolk, lauded COA for making public how almost P200 Million from the PDAF of certain senators went to a bogus organization.
“It is unfortunate that it still boils down to corruption,” said Cayetano, adding “But at least, through these reports that are made public, we are on the first step towards correcting the system. And with this change, I remain positive that soon our people will feel the benefits of economic growth in terms of lower prices, and increased jobs and wages.”
Cayetano also brushed aside accusations by the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) that it was the Liberal Party (LP) that blew up the expose, stressing that the issue is beyond politics.
“Ito ay pera ng tao, hindi ng pulitiko. Regardless of the personalities involved, we need to take measures to ensure that this kind of irresponsible and corrupt handling of the PDAF – or even the MOOE, for that matter – does not happen again, because corrupt practices like this hinder the people from feeling the benefits of economic growth,” he said.
Cayetano also underscored that there is a need to focus on the true issues at hand instead of casting blame on each other.
“Issue hindi intriga. PiTiK, hindi pitikan,” he said as he asked both the candidates and the people to focus on addressing the country’s concerns related to PiTiK: Presyo, Trabaho, Kita.