MANILA, Philippines – How much public funds are available to fight the coronavirus pandemic? Is there enough cash? What will be the implications of the loans that the government availed to generate funds?
These are just some key questions on the government’s anti-coronavirus funds following the enactment of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act on March 26. The law granted President Rodrigo Duterte the power to discontinue programs to generate savings that will be prioritized for the country’s coronavirus response.
Rappler hosted a Rappler+ Webinar at 10 am on Friday, April 17, to answer these questions. We have invited Albay 2nd District Representative Joey Salceda, Ateneo de Manila University Economic Policy Researcher Ken Abante, and our Senate reporter Aika Rey to discuss how to monitor government funds during a crisis.
To watch the full video below, use the password “rpluswebinar.”
Salceda, as former Albay governor, led the province’s Disaster Risk and Response measures that boasts of an almost zero casualty record in most of the major disasters that hit the region. (READ: When disaster hits: Salceda’s advice to local execs)
In a recent in-depth piece, Rey explained 4 special powers under the Bayanihan law, what each means for the pool of funds for the crisis, and whether there is sufficient cash at hand. (READ: Where can cities, municipalities use the P30-B Bayanihan grant?) link
Abante previously worked as a chief of staff of the strategy, economics, and results group of the Department of Finance. He, together with a team of volunteers, created a citizen budget tracker for the COVID-19 response. Their group also published a dashboard monitoring the cost of assistance delivered to each city/municipality. (READ: [ANALYSIS] A deeper look into Duterte’s finances to fight the coronavirus) – Rappler.com