In the light of recent reports coming out in the media, I have reviewed the procedures that we follow in implementing projects funded by my office with respect to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).
My office receives an average of three hundred (300) requests a month to fund various projects from Local Government Units (LGUs). From these requests, I choose which project to fund generally based on my legislative agenda.
The projects to be funded, the amounts allocated to these projects as well as the beneficiary LGUs are then compiled into a list. This list is then submitted to the Department of Budget & Management (DBM) for review and endorsement to the relevant government agencies for implementation. In the last three years, these projects were implemented through various government agencies such as the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Finance (DOF), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) as well as various local government units (LGUs) and State Universities and Colleges (SUCs).
The disbursement of PDAF funds as well as the implementation of PDAF – funded projects is a function and responsibility of the DBM and the implementing government agencies.
A Senator’s role in this process is merely to identify the projects to be funded, the amount allocated to these projects as well as the beneficiary LGUs.
Any question relating to the disbursement, disposition and use of these funds can best be answered by the DBM and the implementing government agencies.
I am eager to cooperate with any investigation, which will reveal the truth of this matter. I am also exploring the possibility that there may be a political angle to all this in light of the upcoming Presidential elections in 2016.