The Philippines' First All-Opinion Website

May 30, 2017


Kapihan sa Manila Bay

Hosted by Marichu Villanueva, Columnist & Editor of the Philippine Star
Cafe Adriatico, Remedios Circle, Malate, Manila
May 31, 2017
9:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.


DBM Sec. Ben Diokno



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(Editor’s note: The starting time may change due to scheduling constraints.)



  • Peace and order is a condition for growth.
  • This will not affect the “Build, build,build” projects.
  • President Xi Jinping is now getting to be known as a leader for globalization while President Trump is now known to be a leader that symbolize protection.
  • ISIS group picked Marawi because of its historical significance. It is the only islamic city recognized in the Philippines.
  • We have already set the budget for 2018 – 2022. Everything is consistent, walang pagbabago. This declaration of martial law will not affect the budget.
  • We have long been focused on Mindanao, many of the depressed regions are in Mindanao.
  • There are 114 SUCs. I am in favor of a system wherein 1/4 of the student’s population in those SUC will be placed under scholarship. However there should be a national exam for that scholarship in order to select the students that are more likely to finish college.
  • We no longer have the PDAF and DAP [in the 2017-2022 budget]. The budget is now compliant for transparency purposes.
  • We still accept aid when given by countries. The EU’s package was over a period of 5 years. We do not need them if there are strings attached.
  • Pasig River: There will be 14 bridges built across Pasig River. This will be donated by China. This will be bigger than Jones Bridge [4 lanes with bicycle lanes]. This is to ease the traffic in the area.
  • Pag may state visit. Ang sagot usually ng host country is for 5 representatives.
  • Safeguards of budget ng junkets is a job for the COA, not DBM or Finance.
  • We plan to submit the 2018 budget on the day of the SONA. That’s the first. Under the constitution, the president is given 30 days to submit the budget. This is the first time that it will be submitted on the day itself.
  • PPP is better when the government builds the project and lets the private companies maintain it. Government is bad when it comes to maintaining projects. It is cheaper and affordable because loans given to the government has lower interest.
  • On immigration: the rule on overtime is that it shouldn’t exceed 50% of your pay. But if your overtime is 2x your salary. In fact I had the salaries audited and one person even took home 720,000 pesos in overtime in one year.
  • 2018 budget: 3.4 Trillion cash budget. 40% will go to education, health and social welfare.

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