“Warm-up” was the cheeky title of the Philippine Star editorial to describe the spate of breakdowns and snafus following Basyang, the first powerful typhoon to take a swing at us post GMA.
Indeed, one can only shake his head at how the country went to the dogs over one typhoon. The power went pfft, PAGASA screwed up in its forecast, ships and boats were totaled or sank off Bataan, flights were diverted or cancelled altogether, and, most significantly, people died, went missing or were injured.
And how did our brave new president cope with this? Well, he scolded PAGASA for the faulty forecast. ““This is not acceptable. I hope this is the last time that we are all brought to areas different from where we should be,” he said, with a half grin plastered on his face (doesn’t it bother you that Ngoyngoy always seems to have one expression?).
PAGASA Administrator Prisco Nilo later told the media that they did their best considering the equipment (as usual, outdated) they work with.
So we ask Noy: is it really necessary for you to shame your officials when you do not equip them with the right tools? And in a foretaste of the lack of Presidential BALLS, P-Ngoy brushed aside the recommendation to increase the calamity fund, saying they have to consult first with the Department of Budget and Management.
“We have to wait for the DBM. All the agencies have needs. We have to consult the DBM and national treasury first, and our economic managers still have to manage the debt cut. I will wait for them to discuss this,” he said, BALLS absent.
Yeah, that’s what you should do. Sit down and study.
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Meanwhile, the equally shorn Butch Abad of the Department of Budget also pointed a finger elsewhere — specifically the GMA administration. Oo na, oo na. GMA and co. should have been more prudent about spending calamity funds.
Reports our favorite ABS-CBN news:
Budget Secretary Butch Abad on Wednesday said he will audit the P2-billion calamity fund after discovering that 70% of the fund has been spent in the first 6 months of 2010 despite the absence of any major disaster in the past months.
“Wala na tayong buffer fund,” Abad said. “Wala kasi silang foresight. Why allot only P2 billion when they knew marami pang pagkakagastusan at bagyong darating?”
Faced with a shortage of calamity funds, Abad said the government can source calamity funds from lawmakers’ pork barrel and the budget allocated for the president’s trips abroad.
When will the buck-passing stop and action begin? Oo na, kayo na magaling.