House saved P66M for nat’l gov’t, says De Venecia ally

Last updated 07:58am (Mla time) 07/06/2007

MANILA, Philippines — A program of “austerity, cost cutting and disciplined financial management” has resulted in a P66-million savings for the House of Representatives which was turned over to the National treasury.


Parañaque Rep. Eduardo Zialcita made this disclosure on Wednesday as he gave credit to Speaker Jose de Venecia for the savings.


In a press statement, Zialcita said this fiscal discipline even made it possible for the construction and completion of a modern gymnasium at the Batasan complex in Quezon City from savings posted in 2005 and 2006.


Zialcita is one of the staunchest supporters of De Venecia in his bid to retain the speakership against the challenge posed by Cebu Rep. Pablo Garcia of the Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (Kampi) party.


“The House of Representatives is perhaps the only agency in government that has returned savings to the National treasury,” Zialcita said. “The 2004 savings, the first for the House in years, set the example for austerity and fiscal discipline in public office.”


Zialcita said the House constructed from its savings a P26-million modern gymnasium, inaugurated only last month, as the House leadership kept up with the demand for more office space and venues for committee hearings in the 14th Congress, which is expected to have 244 members, the biggest since 1987.


The Parañaque congressman said De Venecia also has an ongoing program to bring the House to the digital age with computers that provide members with an electronic link to the plenary hall, to their congressional districts and to the global information technology highway.


In recent months, De Venecia inaugurated an Information Technology training center that continues to provide House members and Secretariat officials and employees with extensive training on the multiple applications and programs afforded by modern technology in the computer age,” Zialcita said.


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