Law school dean and former Provincial Board (PB) member Tomas Abapo, Jr. called on the provincial government to be “transparent” on the province’s financial status after Governor Art Yap earlier announced that the Capitol’s contingency fund has run out.
According to Abapo, the provincial government should issue proof to back Yap’s statement which left many sectors in disbelief.
The former legislator, who believes that the public currently “mistrusts” the government, said the provincial budget officer should issue data on the province’s financial status.
“Ang problema karon, dili na motuo ang mga taw kung estorya lang, daghan ng mo ingon na ‘estoryahe’ ngana ba so kinahanglan naay pruwebe kung tinuod pahibaw-on gyud ang katawhan,” said Abapo.
Abapo who will be seeking a seat in the PB in the 2022 elections said the legislative body should urge Yap and the executive department to show to the public how the province’s calamity fund was spent.
“Og member pa ko karon sa [PB], I have to ask og dili mo request ang Sanggunian mismo, I, as a member, maninkamot ko na makuha nako ng information because I have the right to know,” said Abapo.
In the PB’s first session on Tuesday after the storm hit, the legislative body led by its presiding officer Vice Governor Rene Relampagos did not discuss the issue on the province’s financial capacity to carry out post-typhoon relief operations.
Prior to the session, Yap entered the pre-session area to talk to the legislators but it was not made known as to what was discussed.
In an interview over dzBB on Wednesday last week, Yap said that he could no longer provide rice and other food aid after his contingency fund ran out.
“Kami sa provincial government, inubos ko yung last P30 million naming. Wala na talaga kaming pera, inubos namin lahat, and then kulang parin yun,” said Yap.
Yap warned that if no financial aid will be extended by the national government, military and police troops may be needed for deployment to prevent looting because of growing hunger. (R. Tutas)