TUGUEGARAO CITY, PHILIPPINES- Vice Governor Melvin “Boy” Vargas Jr defended the Sangguniang Panlalawigan’s order to remand the 2017 Proposed Executive Budget of Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba, saying Mamba has all to be blamed on the delayed passage of the budget.
In a statement, Vargas, who is also the chair of the Committee on Appropriations, said he is speaking “in order to put things in their proper perspective and to put a stop to all the baseless accusations designed to mislead our people.”
Vargas clarified that the provincial board did not “disapprove” the Local Development Investment Plan (LDIP), which consisted Mamba’s major projects for his first year as governor.
Mamba, in an earlier news conference, accused the provincial board of “nitpicking” and “politicking” for “non-passage” of the 2017 budget.
“Obviuously, the good governor decided to ditch altogether the protocol and took it upon himself to address the issues contained in the our resolution and even made the sweeping yet incorrect generalization that our resolution is tantamount to our disapproval of the LDIP, AIP (Annual Investment Plan) and the executive budget,” Vargas said, claiming that Mamba had acted alone instead of discussing the remand to the Provincial Development Council.
“The immediate response to our resolution without first consulting the PDC is but a manifestation of the good governor’s autocratic tendencies. And while he is used to this practice, we cannot countenance it here in the provincial government. Mind you, despotism and oppression shall not be allowed while we stand as a body,” Vargas said.
Vargas said the letter of Mamba answering point-by-point their resolution remanding the budget is a “mere scrap of paper- a ploy to stage a public tirade against the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.”
Earlier, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Cagayan passed a lengthy resolution questioning the Local Development Investment Plan (LDIP) CY 2017-2022 of the Mamba administration.
The resolution also noted “findings, observations and recommendations” for Mamba’s “rectifications.”
“It is important that these plans are synchronized, in accord with the programs of the National Government, reflective of the thrusts and priorities of both the executive and legislative department of the Provincial Government and, most importantly, responsive to the needs of Cagayanos. As such, at the earliest opportunity, its contents must be rectified,” the provincial board said in its resolution.
The remand led for the provincial government under a re-enacted 2016 budget. But Vargas said they could still pass the budget in the next sessions, only after the PDC will take action on their recommendations. Northernforum.net