SPEAKER Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez on Thursday gave the House of Representatives five weeks to scrutinize and pass the proposed P5.768 trillion national budget, observing transparency and respect for the voice of the minority.
In his message during the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) briefing, Romualdez reiterated that the House will ensure every centavo of the proposed P5.768 trillion budget will be judiciously spent.
The Speaker expressed confidence the House will be able to pass the proposed 2024 budget on time, noting the Department of Budget and Management managed to submit it twenty days earlier than the constitutional deadline.
“Sisiguruhin natin na maipapasa natin ang 2024 general appropriations bill sa loob ng limang lingo lamang. Apat na linggo sa mga komite, at isang linggo sa plenaryo,” Romualdez said.
“I am confident that the House of Representatives will be able to deliberate and pass the national budget on time and transmit the same to the Senate. I can assure everyone that the House of Representatives will not take a break until and unless we have passed this very important legislation,” he added.
Given the 5-week deadline, Romualdez exhorted all House Members to actively participate in the budget deliberations.
“I call upon the members of this august body to actively participate in the budget deliberation, listen and respect everyone’s view, particularly the concerns of our colleagues from the minority, and
reach a consensus that is beneficial to the country, especially the poor and marginalized among our people,” he said.
Romualdez stressed that in its exercise of the power of the purse, it is the duty of the House to completely scrutinize the proposed 2024 national budget to ensure it would sustain the gains of the past year and support the priorities identified under the eight-point socioeconomic agenda and the Philippine development plan 2023-2028.
“The budget deliberations are a meticulous exercise that requires accuracy, objectivity, and most of all, transparency,” he pointed out.
House needs to closely examine the budget proposals of every department and agency, and analyze every program, activity, and project to ensure that the resources are allocated and optimized on
the right priorities, according to the Speaker.
“With utmost diligence, we will ensure that every centavo of the proposed P5.768 trillion budget will be judiciously spent,” Romualdez said.
“Obligasyon po natin na tiyakin na bawat sentimong buwis na ibinabayad ating mga kababayan ay magagamit nang tama at nararapat. Bawat sentimo nila, may serbisyong kapalit mula sa gobyerno,” he added.
Romualdez said the House will conduct the budget deliberations completely mindful of the weight of its obligation to uphold the trust and confidence of the Filipino people.
“Together, let us be a champion of fiscal prudence, effective resource allocation, and transparent governance. Through our collective efforts, we will continue to uplift the lives of the Filipino people and pave the way for the Philippines with a brighter future,” Romualdez said.