Casilao: Reveal reasons for aborting passage of Road Boad abolition bill

Published September 21, 2018, 5:28 PM

by iManila Developer

By Ben Rosario

Opposition Congressman Ariel Casilao of Anakpawis Partylist has asked the leadership of the House of Representatives to explain to the public its reason for recalling the final reading to approve a bill seeking the abolition of the graft-ridden Road Board.

Opposition Congressman Ariel Casilao (Photo courtesy of 17congress / MANILA BULLETIN)
Opposition Congressman Ariel Casilao (Photo courtesy of 17congress / MANILA BULLETIN)

Representative Casilao, a member of the Makabayan bloc, said Thursday that the public needs to know the justification for the move that reversed in one instant a congressional action that passed through a long and tedious decision-making process.

House Bill 7436 has been rescinded via a mere manifestation made by Majority Leader and Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. last week.

Casilao said that while reversion of an approved measure may not be in violation of House rules, it does not mean that the Chamber can also put the public unaware of the justification for such drastic action.

“The public must be fully informed why the abolition of the Road Board may not push through as previously pledged by the House of Representatives,” he said.

The party-list lawmaker noted that the move to abolish the agency is a popular and welcome development in the wake of allegations that the Road Board is one of the most corrupt agencies in government.

Casilao noted that the Commission on Audit (COA) has been raising red flags on multi-billion peso projects of the board, indicating massive corruption behind the deals.

Both the Senate and the Lower House have passed measures proposing the abolition of the Road Board, an agency tasked to manage and utilize the Road User’s Tax imposed on motorists.

The Lower Chamber voted 162 for and 10 against to pass House Bill 7436 that consolidated 12 measures seeking to abolish the Road Board in order to “ensure the prudent management and utilization of the Road User’s Tax, to curb the instances of fund misuse, misappropriations a d general graft and corruption.”

Andaya did not offer an explanation as to why the third reading approval was recalled.

Aside from abolishing the Road Board, HB 7436 also provides that the Special Pollution Control Fund will be used for programs and projects for the control and supervision of air pollution and solid waste management.