Lorenzana seeks higher budget for AFP amid WPS intrusions

Lorenzana seeks higher budget for AFP amid WPS intrusions

The only way for the Philippines to have a modern and credible armed forces is for the country to spend its own budget in order to acquire the much needed equipment.

As early as now, Department of Secretary Delfin Lorenzana is asking lawmakers to support some of the department’s “ additional priority projects” for the next year.

“Notwithstanding the inclusion of priority programs, activities and projects in the Fiscal Year 2020 of the NEP, may I respectfully request favorable consideration of the following priority projects/activities of the department as congressional initiative from among those which were not considered in the National Expenditure Program (NEP),” Lorenzana told members of the house of representatives.

Defense Chief Delfin Lorenzana
(photo credit to owner)

The following projects, amounting to P6 billion in total, were identified:

·         Operationalization of the 11th Infantry Division in Sulu

·         Development of Col. Ernesto Rabina Air Base at Camp O’Donnell, Tarlac

·         Rehabilitation of Capt. Salvo Pier at Heracleo Alano Naval Base, Cavite

·         Support to National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict

·         Implementation of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration/ Task Force Balik-Loob

·         Mouth Crimping Machine for Bullets

·         Additional GASS for new facilities and maintenance of warehouses for the Office of Civil Defense

·         Upgrading of the communication system of the National Defense College of the Philippines

·         Veterans Hospitalization Program for Philippines’ Veterans Affairs Office

·         Drugs and medicines for Veterans Memorial Medical Center

Based from the NEP, the DND is allocated a total of P258 billion — with P188.7 billion for regular funds and P70 billion for pensions.

Bulk of the spending goes to personnel costs. The budget does NOT include the entire spending for procurement of assets for the modernization program.

Most of the increase for next year will cover personnel spending and pensions for retirees and veterans.

“Compared to our budget for this year, our Fiscal Year 2020 budget proposal is higher by 1.3 percent. The variances for each expense class is as shown: personnel services with additional P3.24 billion, MOOE with an increase of P1.45 billion and capital outlay with a decrease of P2.26 billion,” Lorenzana told lawmakers.

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Report from PDI

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