April 16, 2012 · Posted in: General
POSITIVE FEEDBACK towards the two-part report released by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism regarding government efforts to stamp out corruption at the Department of Public Works and Highways continue to pour in a week after it was published in the mainstream media.
The report was cited in the recent Demand and Supply column by Philippine Star columnist Boo Chancho last week. Chano cited the savings made by the DPWH when it rebidded contracts that were apparently tainted with anomalies. On the other hand, Chanco noted how efforts to stamp out corruption in public infrastructure spending seem to be running afoul of local politicians who are still demanding their cut of the contract.
Chanco’s column may be read here.
At the same time, the story, as published in GMANews.tv, the online news site of GMA Network, got 13 comments, mostly positive in nature.
“Maganda yan may transparency..mawawalan na ang kita mga mayors diyan at mga tiwaling opisyal….may competition among bidders..so..pabor s gobyerno at s mga tao,” remarked a reader nicknamed Noodle.
Reader Evilcrown said it was good that government infrastructure costs have gone down, and that transparency is being exercised by the present DPWH, “samantalang yung last na dpwh secretary eh ayaw maglabas ng datos tungkol sa mga project nila.”
Reader Bertrand2012 however said that it would have been helpful if the report also made an estimate on how much was lost due to delays and the slowdown in the economy.
“It is notable that GDP was fastest during 2009-2010 compared to 2010 to 2012 period covered in the study. There were less infra projects then so this could result in more bidders chasing government projects. Less economic activity meas less construction works. There were savings but the report did not provide an estimate of how much was lost due to delays. The flooding of Pampanga, Tarlac, Bulacan. The slowdown of the economy from 7.6 to 3.7% all have costs. Measured against the damage done by the floodings alone would already offset whatever savings were made.,” said Bertrand2012.
For his part, reader Spokesman2 complained that the delays in the infrastructure projects for Candaba may have resulted in longer and deeper floods for residents in the area.
“Ngayon adding insult to injury na tama lang na danasin nila ang isang preventable na catastrophe in the name of tuwid na daan. Bakit di mo siyasatin kung saan ginastos nung 180+ na congressman yung pork barrel nila para isulong yung impeachment ni corona,” said Spokesman2.
Interestingly, the second part of the report on how local politicians still insist on taking their cut from infrastructure projects in their districts and areas garnered the most attention, and was shared the most number of times by readers of GMANews.tv. The story Daang Matuwid: payoffs to pols still stalk contracts was shared 571 times on Facebook.