Villar assures DPWH 2020 budget is pork-free

Robie de Guzman   •   August 28, 2019   •   1181

Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar

MANILA, Philippines – The P534.29 billion proposed budget for the year 2020 of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is free of pork barrel fund, Secretary Mark Villar assured on Tuesday.

Villar gave the assurance to House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano when he defended their budget proposal before the House Committee on Appropriations.

The DPWH chief said they have shifted to line-item budgeting to ensure that the department’s budget, which is 17 percent higher than that of the previous year, has no illegal pork barrel and the anomalous practice of “parking funds” will not occur.

He added that pork barrel inclusion will not be tolerated by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Villar further stated that Duterte ordered the department to implement reforms to reduce corruption.

“Everything has gone through a vigorous process of vetting and rest assured Mr. Speaker, that there is none,” he said.

“In fact, we have implemented already a software system for the whole DPWH and this is the first of its kind. We monitor projects through the system application called the CMPA (Contract Management Procedures and Application System) that helps us,” he added.

The DPWH chief noted that their strict monitoring of infrastructure projects using this CMPA system has led to the blacklisting of around 18 contractors.

“One of the accomplishments of this system is that we blacklisted almost around 18 contractors. This has been the highest (that) it has ever been implemented in the department,” he said.

“At the same time, we track all projects via geotagging. In other words, the progress of every project will be confirmed by a satellite confirmatory photography,” he added.

Villar also assured that the DPWH’s 2020 budget is evenly distributed across the country’s regions, adding that most of the big-ticket projects are in provincial areas.

“It was really balanced based on needs,” he said.

During the hearing on Tuesday, Villar presented the DPWH strategic infrastructure programs and policies to be supported by its 2020 budget, based on the agency’s National Expenditure Program (NEP).

He also mentioned the department’s Strategic Road Map and the three major outcomes that they hope to accomplish through their 2020 budget.

These include the reduction of travel time which will be achieved through increased road network capacity and the construction of new roads and bridges for seamless transport system; the improvement of road quality and safety; and meeting the international road safety standards with the highest quality; and 4) provision of engineering solutions to road safety concerns.

Villar also reported that 4,536 flood mitigation structures were completed under the DPWH flood control accomplishments from July 2016 to May 2019.

Road accomplishments on the same period also revealed that some 9,845 kilometers of roads were constructed, maintained, widened, upgraded and rehabilitated.

Likewise, there were 2,709 bridges constructed, widened, upgraded, rehabilitated and strengthened in the same period, according to the DPWH chief.

PACC eyes filing initial cases vs erring gov’t officials next week

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) said they will begin filing cases against erring government officials next week.

In a public briefing on Thursday (April 15), PAAC Chairman Greco Belgica said they plan to file the initial cases against several officials from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and Bureau of Immigration (BI) once the Office of the Ombudsman resumes operations.

“By next week, pagbukas ng Ombudsman, we will be filing initial cases doon sa mga kaso na nandito sa office. We’re geared up to file a case next week and we are preparing to file more cases in the coming weeks,” he said.

Meanwhile, the DPWH officials previously identified by President Rodrigo Duterte as involved in corruption had been under investigation by the PACC. Belgica said the agency found evidence proving their involvement in illegal activities.

“We have discovered many damning evidence on the officials. However, doon po sa ma legislators na mga involved, ito po ay iti-nurn over na namin sa Department of Justice (DOJ),” he said.

The PACC official said the agency has no jurisdiction over legislators but as for officials in the DPWH, the agency found evidence proving their involvement.

“Napaka ganda po ng investigation. We are currently substantiating with documents and evidence the testimonies na nakuha namin. As expected these are positive results that support the theories that we had. AAC

 

 

Motorists advised to take alternative routes as DPWH conducts road maintenance in E. Rodriguez Ave, QC

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has advised motorists to take alternative routes as it will conduct road maintenance on E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue in Quezon City.

In an advisory, the department announced it will begin its weeklong road preventive works along E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue, Quezon City between 10:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. which began on Monday (April 12) until Sunday (April 18).

The department will undertake overnight rotomilling followed by asphalt overlay of road lanes along E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue starting from Quezon City Sports Club up to St. Luke’s Medical Center.

DPWH UNDERTAKES ROAD PREVENTIVE WORKS ALONG PORTION OF E. RODRIGUEZ SR. AVENUE

The Department of Public Works and…

Posted by Department of Public Works and Highways on Monday, April 12, 2021

“Due to expected traffic build-up, motorists are advised to take possible alternate routes while road maintenance works are ongoing,” the department said. AAC

PACC confirms corruption still continues in DPWH

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 12, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines — Despite having several district engineers at the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) relieved from office due to alleged corruption, the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) has confirmed there is still corruption in the department.

According to PACC Chairman Greco Belgica, the agency’s investigation showed that there are still employees at the DPWH that still practice corruption and other irregular practices.

The agency still finds questionable transactions and also received reports about irregularities in the department.

“Sa ngayon, ang mga reklamo na sinisiyasat namin ay nagtuturo na ang ganitong pamamalakad ay patuloy na nagaganap. May mga diretsong testimonya na mga galing sa contractors, barangay at local government officials at mga testimonya ng ilan sa inyong mga kawani na nakalap namin sa aming mga imbestigasyon (As of now, the complaints we are looking into point to irregularities still existing [within the department]. There are also testimonies from contractors, barangays, and local government officials. There are testimonies that we have gathered from several employees in our investigation),” he said.

Due to this, the PACC said they will place command centers to strictly monitor DPWH personnel and to immediately take action once there is proven corruption in the department.

The PACC also warns they will implement a one-strike policy on proven violators.

“We will press all our powers and authority to make sure, as instructed by the President, that no one gets away with these illegal activities,” Belgica said. -AAC (with reports from JP Nuñez)

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