Floirendo vows ‘no zero’ budget for solons

Davao del Norte second district Rep. Antonio “Tony Boy” Floirendo assured he would implement a “no zero budget” policy for members of the House of Representatives if he is elected as House Speaker.

Floirendo said he knows how it feels when a lawmaker’s district is stripped of a budget, noting that it is not the lawmaker who is affected but the constituents.

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“It is the people who are deprived not us – the officials,” Floirendo said in a press conference in Davao City on Thursday.

Floirendo, who is seeking another term for the Davao del Norte’s second district, recalled that the budget for his district was stripped by his political nemesis, first district Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez when the latter was still speaker of the House.

Floirendo joined the aspirants for House speakership.

He said Alan Peter Cayetano and Lord Velasco, who are also reportedly eyeing the speakership, are his “good friends.”

Regardless of political parties, Floirendo said the speaker should apportion the budget equally among all lawmakers.

When his district was denied the annual budget, Floirendo said his constituents were deprived of benefits such as healthcare and other infrastructure projects.

He recalled using his own money to desilt a river to free residents of Dujali town from constant flooding. He said he would have used his congressional budget to hire equipment for desiltation not only for Dujali but also for Carmen town.

Floirendo said he wants to return the spirit of “brotherhood” among members of Congress by “working hand in hand with the leadership for the good of the country and people.”

Floirendo, a known supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte in the 2016 elections, said he will not ask the support of the President in his speakership bid.

“We both respect the separation of powers,” the Davao del Norte lawmaker said. (PNA)

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