'Yearly pork battle is on': Lacson declines to reveal sources in budget insertion claims

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 26 2019 12:48 PM

MANILA - Sen. Panfilo Lacson on Thursday declined to reveal his congressmen-sources who informed him of the alleged budget insertions in the 2020 spending plan.

Lacson had alleged that congressmen would supposedly get P700 million each while P1.5 billion would be allotted to each of the 22 deputy speakers under the proposed spending plan.

Capiz Rep. Fredenil Castro earlier said he and House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez challenged Lacson to name his sources.

"Probably one reason why I get more information than the others is my discipline to protect my sources, no matter what. And some pathetic congressmen want me to reveal my sources?" Lacson said in a tweet.

"The yearly 'pork battle' is on. Gloves are off once more. It’s time to lose some friends and create more enemies. I’ll be busy blocking trolls again. I never learn."

Castro called Lacson misguided and urged him to apologize to House members.

Lacson, who has long waged a crusade against discretionary allocations in the national budget, told Castro to "take some memory enhancement pills" as he cited the alleged insertions in the 2019 budget, which delayed its passage.

The country operated on a reenacted 2018 budget until President Rodrigo Duterte signed this year's spending plan in April. 

"He forgets that he and his co-conspirators in the House had illegally inserted P95 billion in the 2019 national budget which the President vetoed as recommended by the Senate," Lacson said.

Malacañang said President Rodrigo Duterte would not hesitate to reject the spending plan if he found it unconstitutional.