Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Sec. Benjamin Diokno III on Friday, Jan. 4, laughed at the alleged ‘flood control scam’ revealed by House Majority leader Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr.
On Thursday, Dec. 03, Andaya said that the DBM, under Diokno, has allocated more than Php 332 billion for flood control projects in areas not prone to flooding since fiscal year 2017 until fiscal year 2019.
Diokno said that he has ordered his staff to review the alleged Php 332 billion used for flood control projects, but doubts the expose of Andaya since the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) only has a budget of Php 555 billion.
“Iniisip ko nga kung saan hinugot yung numero na iyan,” Diokno said during DZRH’s Damdaming Bayan.
“Ang alam ko ang budget ng DPWH ay Php 555 billion lamang, so ibig sabihin niyan more than half iyan ng budget sa flood-control na impossible naman iyon. We’re sorting it out,” Diokno assured.
The budget secretary also mentioned that a large bulk of flood control projects are foreign assisted and were reviewed by international banks, including the Asia Development Bank and the World Bank.
Meanwhile, Diokno stressed that he and his family are not involved in any corrupt practices, or with any contractors.
“Wala sa DNA ko ang corruption. Hindi ako magtatagal ng ganito sa gobyerno, I was chosen by three Presidents to run the budget, kung maiinvolve ako sa corruption,” Diokno added.
Andaya, in his expose, linked Diokno to Aremar Construction who partnered with C.T. Leoncio Trading and Construction, that won Php 2.1 billion worth of projects in Sorsogon and Catanduanes on 2018.
According to the congressman from Camarines Sur, Aremar Construction is owned by Casiguran Mayor Edwin Hamor and Sorsogon province Vice Gov. Ester Hamor, who’s son from her previous marriage is Romeo Sicat Jr, the husband of the DBM chief’s daughter Charlotte Diokno.
“Iba yung father-in-law niya, namatay na yung father-in-law niya,” Diokno said in response to the claims of Andaya.