first published on Blogwatch
Filipinos will foot an even bigger foreign debt bill in the coming years as some development agencies opted to dump multi-billion loans instead of providing full financial grants to the victims of super typhoon Yolanda. It is strange that the Aquino government – which brags of realigned and unused pork funds in billions – readily accepted the new debt ties.
In the minds of the skeptical few, why do we have to accept new loans to pursue rehabilitation efforts when there are billions of foreign aid pouring in and when there are also billions of discretionary funds, now mostly under the President’s control in the wake of the abolition of the priority development assistance fund (PDAF) program?
A month after Yolanda ripped through the country, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed a $500-million emergency loan to provide support in shelter and reconstruction, power restoration, livelihood, resettlement and psychosocial care, and environment protection. The loan was the first phase of its “support” for the typhoon victims.
ADB fueling corruption?
The ADB then pledged an additional $372-million loan and a $23-million grant, bringing the total financial package to about $900 million (P39.9 billion). The additional $372-million loan will support the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS), a program under Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman which is tainted with anomalies. A former employee at the DSWD bared that funds under the program were allegedly misused by some government officials. Continue reading