LAOAG CITY, Aug. 24–Re-elected Congressman Rodolfo C. Fariñas (first district, Ilocos Norte) reported today that all barangays in his congressional district had received various projects from his P70 million Priority Development Assistance Fund since he joined Congress. A sharp contrast to several solons whose PDAFs were allegedly misused in ghost projects by fake NGOs or foundations, hence, the P10 Billion pork barrel scam.
In a broadcast radio interview with DZEA’s Rommel Sagucio this morning, Rep. Fariñas said all the barangays in his district were beneficiaries to his multi-million-peso PDAF in terms of different projects such as infrastructures, agriculture, education, livelihood, etc.
As proof that his constituents benefited from his PDAF, he said they made him unopposed in his re-election bid for congressman. Likewise, they supported his daughter Ria and elected her senior provincial board member, he added.
Reacting to President Aquino’s recent move abolishing the pork barrel for senators and congressmen Fariñas stressed that only Congress could decide on the issue when the President would submit to the House of Representatives the proposed national budget for year 2014.
He said the draft copy of the proposed budget is thick as the bible and studying the content is hard as if taking the bar examination noting that it needs an expert to study it.
Meanwhile, Fariñas announced during the same radio interview that he was elected as new member of the 24-man Commission on Appointments (CA) chaired by Senate President Franklin Drilon. As new officer of CA, Fariñas was also named majority floor leader.
CA is a powerful and influential body that confirms the appointments of heads of executive departments; ambassadors, consuls and public ministers; AFP members from the rank of colonel or naval captain, chief of the Philippine National Police; chairman and commissioners of the CSC, chairman and commissioners of Comelec, chairman and commissioners of Commission on Budget; regular members of the Judicial and Bar Council and members of the Regional and Consultative Commissions.
One privilege of being a CA member like him is that he could request funds for projects in his district from department executives passing through CA for the confirmation of their appointments, Fariñas added.# (jun r. guiang)