Arroyo suspends P5.1-B road fund
Lira Dalangin-Fernandez firstname.lastname@example.org
PRESIDENT Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has suspended the release of the controversial 5.1-billion-peso road user's tax, Press Secretary Ignacio Bunye announced on Monday.
The fund for release to 210 members of the House of Representatives, except the party-list representatives, was allegedly being used to persuade lawmakers not to support the impeachment complaints against Arroyo.
Bunye said the President ordered Public Works and Highways Secretary Hermogenes Ebdane to immediately suspend the fund's release.
Bunye said that Arroyo's orders were in line with the "judicious use of resources."
"I think it's not advisable to carry out such projects under this weather," he told INQ7.net.
But Bunye could not say whether the money would be kept intact or would be used for other projects.
The fund, the biggest the Road Board would allocate since its creation in 2001, is to be used for road maintenance in the congressional districts. Each solon would receive 26.7 million pesos.
Last year, the government spent 2.5 billion pesos for the "Kalsada Natin, Alagaan Natin" (These are Our Streets, Let's Care for Them) program of the President where street sweepers wore shirts bearing her name.
Arroyo is facing possible impeachment before Congress on charges of vote fraud, corruption, and human rights violations.