Arroyo wants budget passed intact
Quezon City (16 October) -- PRESIDENT Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said that she wants the 2007 budget passed intact and urged the Senate to speed up deliberations on the measure.
"May the budget be passed by the Senate without any changes. If it passes in its current form, then we can say 2007 is the year that it all comes together,” Arroyo said during a roundtable discussion in Malacañang.
Arroyo also said the budget "is a matter of national interest that can no longer be delayed as a train of popular expectations is waiting to travel onward."
For the first time in six years, Arroyo said the 2007 budget allocates bigger amounts for social service than for interest payment.
Budget Secretary Rolando Andaya Jr. said there will be a reduction in interest payment from P340 billion to P318 billion.
The P22-billion difference will go to the Department of Education (P16 billion), Department of Health (P5 billion), and Department of Social Welfare and Development (P1 billion). (PIA) [top]