THE Senate panel yesterday approved the judiciary’s proposed P44.98 billion budget for 2022.
Before the approval, Supreme Court Administrator Jose Midas Marquez told the panel they have proposed a P67.28 billion budget next year but the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) reduced it by P22.3 billion as it only allocated P44.98 billion under the National Expenditure Program.
Marquez said this is lower than the judiciary’s 2021 budget of P45.31 billion which violates the Constitution.
“It is lower and this is actually in violation of the Constitution, specifically Section 3 of Article 8, where the budget of the judiciary cannot be lower than the previous year,” Marquez said.
He also requested to restore the P7.47 billion to the judiciary’s budget.
Senator Francis Tolentino moved for the approval of the proposed budget of the judiciary saying “with the other requirement that they be given an increase during plenary.”
“There is a motion. The chair has no issues with the judiciary and in fact would like to reiterate his continuing support for all the courts and for the increase in the budget which we will do at the appropriate time,” Senate Finance Committee chairman Sonny Angara said.
“Without further ado, there’s a motion. Hearing no objection, the motion is approved and the budget of the judiciary, the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, the Sandiganbayan, the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, and the Court of Tax Appeals, and other courts is approved at the committee level and will be favorably recommended to plenary for plenary debate,” Angara said.