House minority wants to fast-track gov’t spending

MANILA The minority bloc at the House of Representatives on Wednesday called on government agencies to speed up the expenditure and implementation of disbursement programs to combat the rising unemployment.

In a press conference, Minority Leader Danilo Suarez said government expenditure generates more jobs and encourages business opportunities that fuel the country's economic growth.

Suarez stressed that the slow disbursement of government funds must be addressed, wherein the year-to-date spending was at PHP2.19 trillion out of the PHP3.767 trillion 2018 national budget in August. This, he said, merely amounts to almost 60 percent of the budget with only four months left to the year.

"The minority calls on the different agencies, especially the Department of Budget and Management, to accelerate the expenditure and implementation of government projects," Suarez said.

"We urge the heads of the agencies to strictly monitor the accomplishments of their programs, particularly the big-ticket infrastructure projects, and hasten its completion, especially that we shall be adopting a cash-based budgeting scheme this 2019. This should generate more jobs and increase household income," he added.

Suarez cited the recent Social Weather Stations survey showing that unemployment among Filipinos increased to 22 percent or 9.8 million individuals in the third quarter of the year. This is almost a 3-point jump from the 19.7 percent in June, or an increase of more than 1 million Filipinos unemployed.

Suarez also proposed to nationalize the Small Town Lottery (STL) to create employment for those who have difficulties finding employment due to factors such as age, lack of education, or physical disabilities.

He said the STL program of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office has produced around 270,000 cobradores, 21,200 cabos, and 11,700 organic STL employees this year. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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