Malacañang says no politics involed in public service efforts of the Aquino administration

February 20, 2013 10:46 pm 

MANILA, Feb. 20 — There is no politicking involved in the acceleration of the Aquino administration’s public service programs coming into the election period as claimed by other sectors, Malacañang said on Wednesday.

“Insinuations that the Aquino administration and its allies have been distributing PhilHealth cards and rice, and "rushing" the implementation of public works projects, as part of the election campaign, reeks of a malicious, anti-people mindset that aims to cast aside our people's welfare for the sake of a few soundbites,” Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a statement.

According to Lacierda, the PhilHealth cards were delivered to the beneficiaries of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) as part of the Sajahatra Bangsamoro program, which was launched recently by the government, “as a gesture to build good will and sustain the forward momentum of the peace process.”

Lacierda said PhilHealth never sanctioned the release of benefits in the alleged campaign activity of administration bets in Bohol and no representative from the said agency was present during the supposed distribution of health cards which, upon investigation, were not even from PhilHealth.

He also added that the national government was never involved in the release of rice by local executives in Bohol and that the infrastructure projects, which are being funded by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), are being accelerated precisely to ensure that their economic benefits reach our people before the election ban takes place.

“At no instance—whether during this election period, or during the two years and eight months of the Aquino administration—were these services, or any government-funded initiative, rendered in exchange for political favors from voters or constituents. It is simply government doing its job – a job that must be done regardless of the political climate,” Lacierda stressed.

Lacierda said the public service agenda of President Benigno S. Aquino III will not be held hostage by such remarks motivated by electioneering as he called on everyone to exercise vigilance upon reporting and receiving such misinformation.

“We call on the citizenry to be vigilant of the motivations behind such insinuations; the media to present the facts fairly, completely, and accurately; and the candidates and their allies to participate in the democratic process in a manner that is honorable, and does not sacrifice public welfare upon the altar of politics,” concluded Lacierda in his statement. (PNA)

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