By Rjhay E. Laurea
PASAY CITY — The Philippine Senate on Monday (November 14) has already approved the proposed Php2.3 Billion budget of the Office of Vice President (OVP) for 2023 which Vice President Sara Duterte believes is an indication of the honorable senators’ trust and confidence in the OVP.
Duterte expressed her gratitude to the senators and said the decision demonstrates “confidence and trust by the honorable senators of the integrity, commitment, and dedication of the OVP to good governance and public service.”
“The approval bolsters the OVP’s determination to ensure that social services and other government programs and projects reach communities and bring about positive development and provide solutions to the problems of our fellow Filipinos across the country — especially those who are living in underprivileged communities and those battered by natural calamities and armed conflicts,” Duterte added.
During the plenary hearing, several senators expressed full support for the Vice President’s ongoing and proposed programs.
“Malaki po ang aking tiwala kay Vice President Sara Duterte. Alam ko pong magiging malaking tulong po ang mga programa niya para sa ating mga kababayan (I have a huge trust to our Vice President Sara Duterte. I know her programs will be a big help to our countrymen),” said Senator Bong Go.
Sen. Sonny Angara, chair of the Senate Committee on Finance, said that with the OVP’s expanded operations, the office deserves the support of the Senate.
“The Office of the Vice President is the second highest official of the land who deserves support. We should want her to succeed, irrespective of (whether) we agree (or not) to that person. It’s the institution that we’re trying to honor,” Angara said.
The OVP has already established satellite offices and the Disaster Risk Relief Operations Center, and implemented the Medical and Burial Assistance program, Libreng Sakay program, PagbaBAGo Campaign, and Kalusugan Food Trucks. The economic and livelihood project Mag Negosyo ‘Ta Day, Peace 911, and the building of the permanent home of the Office of the Vice President will be implemented early next year.
Angara said that “it’s part of the mandate of the OVP to deliver public services across the country.”
“Marami po ang lumalapit sa Office of the Vice President para sa burial expenses, medical expenses, the same people who approach us, actually. I would venture to think na dito naman sa ating bise-presidente, mas malaki pa ang pangangailangan nila kaysa sa atin (So many people are seeking assistance from the Office of the Vice President for burial expenses, medical expenses, the same people who approach us, actually. I would venture to think that our vice president, they are more in need than us),” Angara said.
Some 30 minutes into the hearing, Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva moved that the proposed 2023 budget be deemed submitted for approval.
No senator objected to Villanueva’s motion, prompting the approval of the OVP budget. (ai/mtvn)