It breeds patronage politics and the politics of immoral compromises between the executive and legislative branches of government.
As a result, pork barrel undermines the primary duty of Congress to draft and pass laws for the common good. Conversely, it seeks to preserve and protect the interests of those who are in power.
Pork allocations over the years have grown by leaps and bounds. In 2010, that amount was P26.0 billion at P80 million each for the 250 house members plus P250 million each for 24 senators.
At 30-45% bribe, either demanded from or offered by contractors, that’s a whopping P7.8 – P11.7 billion – a huge incentive for corruption that translates to 8% of the entire P1.4 trillion 2010 budget.
This amount lost to corruption is more than the entire P10.6 billion budget of the DSWD; nearly equal the P12.6 billion budget of the Judiciary and the P13.1 billion budget of DAR; half the entire budget of P22.8 billion for state colleges and universities; and 42% of the entire P27.9 billion budget of the DOH.
The Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism, in 2004, already came up with very comprehensive analyses on pork, entitled Pork is a Political, Not a Developmental, Tool and Legislators Feed on Pork. Despite damning revelations, all of our politicians, particularly those in Congress who directly benefit, simply have to turn a blind eye.
The result – the primary duty of Congress to draft and pass laws for the common good is undermined. Instead, the interests of those who are in power are preserved and protected.
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Infrographic: Meet the new system after pork barrel 'abolition'