By Rjhay E. Laurea
MANDALUYONG CITY — After the swift approval of the Office of the Vice President (OVP) Sara Z. Duterte’s budget at the House of Representatives on Thursday (September 22), the OVP is now preparing to defend its 2023 budget in the Senate.
OVP spokesperson Atty. Reynold Munsayac said they are expecting that the Senators will ask for further details about some provisions stated on the OVP budget but they are ready to answer the inquiries.
The OVP is set to defend its budget before the Senate on September 29, Thursday.
“Inaasahan po natin na magtatanong din ang ating mga Senador ukol sa ilang provisions sa OVP budget pero handa naman po tayo ipaliwanag mabuti ang lahat ng mga ito (We are expecting that the Senators will ask about some provisions on the OVP budget but we are ready to explain everything on it),” he expressed.
The OVP has proposed a budget of ₱2.3-billion to fund its Projects, Programs and Activities (PPAs) which are mostly social services and livelihood programs.
Recently, Munsayac thanked members of the House of Representatives who participated and interpolated the budget.
“Nagpapasalamat po tayo sa ating budget sponsors at sa mga miyembro ng House of Representatives sa mabilis na pagpasa ng budget ng OVP (We thanked all the sponsors and the members of the House of Representatives for their immediate approval of the OVP budget),” Munsayac said.
“Sinubukan po ng OVP na masagot na ang ibang concerns ng mga kagalang-galang natin na Congressmen bago pa ang hearing kaya siguro tatlo na lamang ang nagtanong sa plenary at natapos ang proceedings sa loob ng halos isang oras lang (The OVP tried to answer other concerns of our respected congressmen even before the hearing so only three lawmakers ask their questions at the plenary and the proceedings were finished within an hour),” he further stated..
Davao de Oro First District Representative Maricar Zamora, who was one of the sponsors of the Plenary Budget Deliberation for OVP and the Department of Education, said the OVP’s projected expenditure will fund initiatives “that will cascade to the people in the regional and the provincial level.”
Zamora also stressed that the OVP satellite offices strategically situated across the country will help boost the Vice President’s thrust to bring the government’s support closer to the people.
“One of the major programs that the office of the Vice President (implements) that is new, probably compared to the previous Vice Presidents, is the establishment of regional (satellite) offices. It is the intention of the Vice President to be more accessible to the people in terms of the delivery of social services,” Zamora said.
The current lineup of PPAs of the OVP is expected to expand as additional projects will roll out soon, including the Magnegosyo Ta ‘Day (MTD) — a livelihood program implemented by Duterte when she was Davao City Mayor, which primarily caters to women.
The MTD spring-boarded the Rainbow Magnegosyo which focuses on members of the LGBT community. Beneficiaries were given short and basic courses on business management before providing them with monetary capital.
Vice President Sara Duterte, who leads both the OVP and DepEd, was also present in the budget deliberations to show support to her office’s team. (ai/mtvn)