Pork barrel scandal
tHE SHOCKING P10 BILLION PORK BARREL SCANDAL HAS OCCUPIED THE PUBLIC ATTENTION IN THE PAST TWO MONTHS SINCE IT FIRST EXPLODED IN MID-jULY. tHE NEWS HAD BEEN COVERED IN BOTH PRINT AND BROADCAST MEDIA, AS WELL AS IN SOCIAL MEDIA VIA THE INTERNET. iT IS INTERESTING TO LOOK BACK AT WHAT HAVE HAPPENED IN THE PAST AND RELATE THEM WITH THE PRESENT AS THE EVENTS UNFOLD. lET US USE tHE mILLION pEOPLE mARCH HELD AT THE lUNETA(rIZAL pARK) HELD ON AUG. 26, 2013 AS A REFERENCE DATE. tHE PROTEST RALLY WAS TIMED ON A NATIONAL HOLIDAY, aRAW NG bAYANI (nATIONAL hEROES dAY ), CALLING FOR THE ABOLITION OF THE PORK BARREL OR THE PRIORITY DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANT FUND (pdaf). iT WAS ATTENDED BY OVER 150,000 PEOPLE AND THE anc CABLE t.v STATION ESTIMATED THE CROWD TO HAVE REACH 400,000 PROTESTOR. Exactly a week before the Million People March on Aug. 19,2013, President Benigno Aquino 3rd rebuffed mounting calls for the abolition of the PDAF from church leader and civil society groups who were outraged by the scale of the misuse and abuse of PDAF over the years . it was the first time that president Aquino addressed the pork barrel issue where the legislators pocketed the public funds intended for the target beneficiaries . he declared: “as in everything else, there are good uses and bad uses.’’ P-NOY said that “perhaps the right thing to do is to apply the appropriate punishment for the misuse, but support its good use specially in communities outside the National Capital Region .’’ He recounted that as a congressman, he requested his pork barrel allocation be given for the repair of Manila North Road (MacArhthur Highway) in his district in Tarlac province “if we scrap it, then we presume that the national government knows all our needs and attends to these all the time,and I believe tahat’s a little farfetched,’’ the president claimed. The presumption that Mr. Aquino made is a wrongf assumption to start with.
November 17, 2012
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