Duterte orders Congress to convene special session on Oct 13-16 to pass 2021 national budget
By Ella Dionisio
To avoid any delay in the passage of the 2021 national budget, President Rodrigo Duterte orders Congress to convene a special session on October 13-16 and certified it as urgent, Malacanang said on Friday.
“President Rodrigo Roa Duterte today, October 9, has called the Congress to a special session scheduled on October 13-16, 2020 to resume the congressional deliberations on the proposed 2021 national budget and to avoid any further delays on its prompt passage,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.
In a video message, Roque said the action was done by Duterte because it is very important for the budget to be passed.
“The President also certified the proposed 2012 budget as urgent”, he said.
“This was done by the President because it is very important that the proposed 2021 national budget will be passed and enacted into law because we will use it in our fight against COVID-19,” he added.
Last Thursday evening, Duterte appealed to the House of Representatives to fix their issue on speakership to prevent the proposed P4.5 billion budget from being delayed as it is needed by the Filipinos right now that the country is facing the COVID-19 pandemic threat.
He told the members of the House that he will fix the problem if they cannot solve it.
Duterte's move came as Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said he will present a copy of the 2021 national budget to the Senate on Nov. 5.
Cayetano on Oct.6 approved the national budget on second reading and suspended sessions at the House of Representatives until Nov. 16. He created a small group to accept committee and individual amendments to prepare the General Appropriations Bill for third and final reading on Nov. 16.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles earlier said based on the calendar of the House, they should pass the budget on the third and final reading by October 14. DMS