Prelate calls for the abolition of pork barrel system

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MANILA, August 13, 2013—A Catholic bishop called on government leaders to pursue the abolition of the pork barrel, more commonly known as the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), saying it is a ”system of corruption” that continuously plagues the Philippine society. 

Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo said the alleged grave misuse of the pork barrel by some of the country’s legislators should serve as a wake-up call for government leaders to trash the controversial funding system. 

“The pork barrel only benefits people in authority. This is a system of corruption that has to be abolished,” he said in the vernacular. 

Some lawmakers are currently under fire for the alleged P10-billion scam that involves the diversion of their PDAF to bogus non-governmental organizations (NGO) for ghost projects in the past 10 years. 

Pabillo said even if some legislators are not involved in the scam, it is best to abolish the fund so as to remove this looming avenue for corruption in the government. 

“Even if some lawmakers claim that they are not involved in the scam as they comprehensively and accurately report their PDAF expenses, it is still best to abolish a system of corruption such as this,” he said. 

The prelate noted that government officials must stick to their original duties to avoid involvement in any controversial and illegal scheme. 

“Lawmakers are elected by the people to legislate and not to implement government projects. They should not identify which government project is entitled for funding. Let the officials from the executive department do that,” he said. (Jennifer M. Orillaza)

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