Campaign Months 1 and 2

Top bets for prez, VP, senator
spend P54M daily on pol ads

EVEN WITH just part of their campaign spending captured by Nielsen Media’s monitoring of their political ads from Feb. 9 to the end of March, at least two presidential and two senatorial candidates have already breached half of the cap set by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).Interestingly, too, many candidates for national posts apparently went […]


Early birds on a binge: 15 top bets
splurge P373M on ABS-CBN ads

BARELY A MONTH has lapsed since the official campaign period started last February 9 but at least 15 candidates for national posts have already acquired P373 million worth of ads from leading television network ABS-CBN alone.

Sidebar 2, Part 3

What they told COA

WHEN it conducted its special audit on the disbursement of pork in 2007-2009, part of the methodology that the Commission on Audit (COA) employed was to confirm the authenticity of documents from the concerned parties – the legislators who endorsed the projects, the suppliers and beneficiaries, and the regulatory offices. This was COA’s way of […]

Sidebar 1, Part 3

What they told PCIJ

PCIJ SENT 20 legislators implicated in the alleged corruption of pork funds separate letters requesting for comments. Only three responded in writing, a fourth had his chief of staff interviewed on cam, and a fifth promised to send his reply via courier.The three who sent response letters – Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus B. […]

Sidebar, Part 2

Binay’s pork: Breaking bad

AFTER THE Supreme Court declared the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) unconstitutional in November 2013, a modified pork-like system of funneling funds to projects endorsed by lawmakers was born and from it, Vice President Jejomar ‘Jojo’ C. Binay supposedly continued to get his pork share. It is difficult to say, however, how much pork he […]

Sidebar, Part 1

The modus of pork crooks

CORRUPTION, an apparent eternal scourge of Philippine government and politics, is firmly entrenched in many public agencies.It thrives often in secret, but its murky methods are the known tools of trade of crooks, big and small. They include the authors and architects – the big fish who conceive and command it, and draw the largest […]


‘Candidates’ to lead COA?

BEING CHIEF bean counter may not sound that impressive, and the probability of going against countless politicians could be daunting. Yet the job of leading the 9,000 personnel under the Commission on Audit is crucial enough to merit a close scrutiny of the big names that have been floated as possible successors to outgoing COA […]


COA under Grace

SHE IS the first female head of the Commission on Audit, but that will not be the only distinction Maria Gracia Pulido-Tan will be remembered for after her term of office lapses tomorrow. Indeed, she will leave behind a trail of groundbreaking reforms in the government’s premier audit institution, even though she was its chief […]


Backstory: The COA Chairs

THE PHILIPPINES has had seven chairpersons for the Commission on Audit (COA) since 1986. Yet while they have wound up being named respondents in court cases, most of these chairpersons have not been as well-known as other leaders of agencies in charge of the budget.COA exercises the role of making sure that public funds are […]


A throng of typhoons

RIGHT AFTER calamities have ravaged homes and communities, the government mounts relief and rescue work with speed and vigor – and still has energy left to provide photo-op events for the media. But when it comes to the more difficult tasks of rehabilitation and recovery, or even preparing communities for when the next disaster comes – the downtime between calamities – the government takes on the character of a drunken turtle, rolling out projects and releasing funds in slow and scattered fashion.

« Older Entries | Newer Entries »