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Where is money for flood projects?

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(BY: ATTY. BATAS MAURICIO) LIFE’S INSPIRATIONS: “Woe to the sinful nation, a people whose guilt is great, a brood of evildoers, children given to corruption! They have forsaken the Lord; they have spurned the Holy One of Israel and turned their backs on him…” (Isaiah 1:4, the Holy Bible).

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WHERE DID THE MONEY FOR FLOOD PROJECTS GO?President Aquino and his government are most likely going to be embroiled in another corruption scandal in a few days time, in the aftermath of the heavy flooding that hit many areas in Metro Manila and neighboring provinces Friday, September 19, 2014, as a result of the non-stop rains caused by Typhoon Mario and the southwest monsoon.

Many members of social networking sites in the Internet are again in uproar, angered by the floods that submerged most of the metropolis, despite government claims that, as of July 2014, 60 percent of its multi-billion peso flood programs were already completed, after they were funded by Aquino’s “disbursement acceleration program” or DAP, before it was nullified by the Supreme Court.

In a Facebook post, Renato Reyes Jr. of Bayan quipped: “Dear (Budget Secretary) Butch Abad: If you are already ok, please explain what happened to these DAP-funded projects: P295 million priority flood control projects of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA); P154 million urban renewal, traffic management and flood control, phase one (also of MMDA); P2.8 billion DPWH flood control projects.” Easily, these flood projects cost taxpayers about P3.3 billion! Where did this money to?

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DPWH, MMDA, URGED TO ACCOUNT FOR FLOOD MONEY: William Jacinto Juan, on the other hand, shared this translated post by the Facebook group “Talakayang Pinoy”: “…The DPWH and the MMDA have to report on the status of their projects which were claimed to have been 60% completed as of July 20, 2014 (they must be fully completed by now, September 2014): six projects under the Upper Marikina River Improvement Program, P222.5 million;

“Four projects under the East Mangahan Floodway Program, P190 million; the Marikina River Project, P50 million; and the Manila Bay Seawall Strengthening Project, P211.05 million, and others. Why were Quezon City, Marikina City, Pasig City, Cainta and Taytay, Rizal, and other places, hit with super-floods? Please explain…”

The post of “Talakayang Pinoy” shared by Juan cited the link of an online news item reporting on the claims of DPWH and MMDA . The link:  http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/621633/60-of-dap-funded-flood-control-projects-completed-dpwh#ixzz3DkPGuytg.

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PNOY DERIVES JOY IN SEEING PINOYS SUFFER?Indeed, if these billions of pesos were only spent honestly, we should no longer have seen the likes of the monstrous floods that roared through Metro Manila and nearby provinces last Friday. That the floods came ferociously despite the supposed completion of these projects could only mean one or all these three things: first, the projects may not have been carried out at all, and the money may have been pocketed by some favored souls.

Or, the projects may have been carried out all right, but the amount spent for the completed anti-flood infrastructures may have been cut or the costs may have been bloated. Or, the projects may not have been built pursuant to specifications, enabling the builders to “save” or “cut” on cost, and thereby make them earn more handsomely.

In the meantime, media reports Friday night officially tallied three dead, including a two-year old child and an old woman who died of hypothermia after having been exposed to severe cold temperature, with thousands and thousands of Filipinos driven out of their homes to camp on jampacked and overcrowded evacuation centers, or stranded in some lonely port or road. Maybe, President Aquino derives joy in seeing this kind of suffering among Filipinos?

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PLEASE LISTEN: “Tambalang Batas at Somintac”, jointly aired at 1062 kHz in Manila, 1080 kHz in Dagupan City, 711 kHz in Naga City, 1260 kHz in Lucena City, 1224 kHz in Davao City, and at www.eaglenews.ph, Mondays to Fridays, at 6 a.m.; “Kakampi Mo Ang Batas”, at 103.7 mHz in Don Carlos, Bukidnon, Mondays to Fridays, at 7 a.m.; “Kakampi Mo Ang Batas” at 801 kHz on the AM band (Panay Island), Mondays to Fridays, at 10 a.m.; and “Kakampi Mo Ang Batas” at 107.5 Win FM, Roxas, Isabela (Saturday, 5:30 a.m., and Sunday, 7 a.m.). -30-




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