Respect the law, Romualdez urges PNoy
- July 15, 2014
- Written by Jester P. Manalastas
- Published in Top Stories
“STOP dividing the people with the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).”
This is the advice of House Independent Minority leader Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez to President Benigno Aquino who earlier delivered a nationwide address to explain and defend the DAP to the public and question the Supreme Court decision declaring the program unconstitutional and illegal.
According to Romualdez, the president should just let the law take its course since he failed to directly refute the specific grounds cited by the SC in ruling the DAP unconstitutional such as the transfer of savings of the Executive branch to augment the appropriations of offices not under it.
Romualdez said that whoever advised the President to threaten the high tribunal with a possible clash over the DAP issue should be immediately fired.
“Too bad, the President’s address was only about his insistence on the legality of DAP due to the good faith and good intention behind it, blaming the Arroyo Administration again and making the threat to the SC,” Romualdez said.
“He tried to justify the legality of DAP with a provision in the Administrative Code, But even non-lawyers are aware that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land,” the solon added.
Romualdez, who is the president of the Philippine Constitution Association (Philconsa), stressed that the threat to the SC was totally irresponsible.
He then reminded the President that he does not have any power over the High Tribunal and that it is the final arbiter of legal conflicts or interpreter of laws.
For Romualdez, DAP is really illegal and whoever masterminded it must be held accountable.
“Good faith or good intention does not exempt anyone from penalties for violating the law,” Romualdez said, adding that “justice is what the people want for the DAP. They deserve nothing less. Let’s give it to them, then move on. The country has scores of problems for the government to address.”