Trillanes on Robredo’s full disclosure policy: It can save gov’t billions of pesos

Former Senator Antonio Trillanes IV agreed with Vice President Leni Robredo to enforce a “full disclosure policy” in government if she wins the presidency because this will save billions of pesos in public funds.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV and Vice President Leni Robredo (VPLR Media Bureau)

Trillanes, who is running for senator under Robredo’s ticket, said the government funds lost to corruption could have been used to finance infrastructure projects, housing, and poverty alleviation programs.

“Alam naman natin na bilyon-bilyon ang nawawala sa mamamayan dahil sa katiwalian (We know the people are losing billions of pesos due to corruption),” Trillanes, a known fiscalizer in government, said in a statement.

“Ilang milyong pabahay na ‘yan? Ilang kilometro ng farm-to-market roads? Ilang magsasaka, mangingisda o urban poor na ang mabibigyan ng ayuda? (How many millions of houses could have been built with that? How many kilometers of farm-to market roads? How many farmers, fishermen, or urban poor could have been given aid?),” he said.

The government might have lost about P1.4 trillion due to corruption in the preceding two years, or equivalent to at least 20 percent of the country’s annual budget, 2019 data showed.

READ: ‘Full disclosure of gov’t deals to be observed; passage of FOI bill urgent’ — Robredo

Such amount could have been used to construct 1.4 million housing units for the poor and provide medical or educational assistance for at least seven million Filipinos.

Deputy Ombudsman Cyril Ramos reported this in 2019 based on his personal calculation of the money lost to corruption.

“Maraming magagawa si VP Robredo sa pondong yan (VP Robredo can do a lot of things with that fund),” said Trillanes.

The Magdalo leader believes Robredo, given her political will and character, will fully implement the planned public disclosure of all government transactions, contracts, and procurements.

“Alam natin kung paano humawak ng pondo si VP Leni. Doon sa kokonting budget ng kanyang tanggapan, napakarami na niyang nagawa. Paano pa kaya kung siya na ang pangulo (We know how VP Leni handles funds. With the meager budget she received, she did a lot. What more if she becomes president)? We can expect great things to happen under her administration,” he said.

READ: Robredo: ‘Gov’t system must force public officials to be good’

Trillanes described Robredo’s policy as an “effective way to curb and deter corruption in government offices” likening it to his proposal to livestream all public biddings.

“Itong (This) ‘full disclosure policy’ ni VP Leni at ang aking panukalang (of VP and my proposed) livestream at (and) video recording ng lahat ng (of all) public bidding ay malakas na (is a strong) deterrent na laban sa korapsyon (against corruption),” he said.

Trillanes added that the video recording can also be used in administrative and criminal proceedings against corrupt officials.

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