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Alejano: Innocent people to be affected by zero infra funding for opposition solons

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As one of the 24 House members who lost infrastructure funds in the 2018 budget, Magdalo partylist Rep. Gary Alejano said the action would only deprive many innocent people of the service owed by the government.

“Sino po ang tunay na nawalan at talo sa desisyong ito ng administrasyong Duterte? Hindi po kaming mga nasa oposisyon, kundi ang mga mamamayang Pilipino na dapat sana ay makikinabang sa mga programa at proyektong ito,” the Magnificent 7 lawmaker said.

“It is unfortunate that the majority treats the government budget as if it is their own, when in fact it is owned by the Filipino people,” Alejano said.

“This is clearly an attempt to stifle healthy dissent which ultimately benefits the people and our democracy. What is worse is that in their attempt to silence the opposition, innocent people who are in need of the government’s attention are going to be deprived,” he added.

Based on earlier news reports, the lawmakers who lost infrastructure funds for their districts or constituencies included members of the Magnificent 7 and the Makabayan bloc, as well as some Liberal Party members allied with the majority coalition.

Makabayan lawmakers, however, have denied ever tapping infrastructure funds.

Alejano said that in the case of his partylist group, “the budget allocation for infrastructure projects are for our constituents and not for ourselves.”

“In our case, in the Magdalo Party-List, we recommend inclusion of programs and projects for our constituents which are incorporated in the government agencies’ budget,” he said.

“The agencies are then the ones that implement the programs and projects we have recommended. Therefore, if our recommendations are slashed, then it is our constituents that are disenfranchised,” he added.