The Philippine government will spend a whopping 8 billion pesos for the construction of a luxurious new four-tower 11 story building for the elected Senators of the republic. The new Senate building will be tower over the Philippine Navy Village in Fort Bonifacio. Also, adding to that expense is a P127 million annual lease. Just last March 18, 2019. A groundbreaking ceremony was held and attended by current senators Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto, Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, Minority Leader Franklin Drilon and Senator Panfilo Lacson, Sonny Angara, Nancy Binay, JV Ejercito, Sherwin Gatchalian, Gregorio Honasan, Loren Legarda, and Joel Villanueva.
Much worst, the aforementioned construction firm who designed the building is said to have also been linked to controversial over-priced construction projects including the Makati City Hall Building II and the Makati Science High School building of former Vice President, Jejomar Binay which was questionably priced at 2 billion pesos.
Don’t you find this very ironic that the same old construction firm linked in Senate investigations in 2014 were now chosen as the same firm to build these luxurious 8 billion pesos 4 tower Senate buildings? The said developer has won a measly 0.36 points from the Senate community’s second choice, Ping Lacson said in his sponsorship speech of the Senate resolution confirming the design firm as the winner of the Global Conceptual Design Competition for the new home of the Philippine Senate.
8 billion pesos too much — when we still lack hospitals and school buildings
It is common knowledge that we are in need of more classrooms to accommodate the 27 million students who would return to school this year. Just consider the hefty price-tag. How many school buildings could we have built? How many new teachers we could have hired? Or even perhaps donate much of the money to acquire better instructional equipment so we can raise the standards of education in public schools. We’re also in need of more medical facilities and personnel to cater to the needs of Filipino citizens especially in far-flung villages in the country. There are so many things we could spend the heft 8 billion pesos price tag on that will benefit much of the voting population. I don’t see why this is a necessity?
The current US Senate chamber was opened as far back as 1859 and until now currently still being used by US lawmakers. And if you try to think about the irony – the US is one of the worlds leading superpower. It obviously gives better public health care and education compared to the Philippines. But it opted to use an old building as the permanent seat the government’s legislative branch since it’s conception in the 1700’s.
A luxurious new building for the stamp-pad Pro Duterte Senate?
Adding insult to this is that dismal performance of the Senate and its propensity to bow down before the Executive branch of the government. Even as far as agreeing to everything that Duterte says or do. To his policy of mass-butchery, his Pro China leanings despite PCA rulings re-affirming PH sovereignty over WPS and of course his many atrocities which rocked the International community yet many of the Senators in the chamber cheered on him.
The only thing that the Senate relented to act in favor of Duterte was Charter Change since this premise would render their voting power useless should the House of Representatives and Senate merge into one. Thus, fearing that they might lose their relevance in the process — they decided to opt out from it as it may reduce their influence over government processes. So basically most of the Pro Duterte senators who disagreed with this are not acting based on impartial patriotic grounds but rather their selfish self-interests might be affected.
Judging by how these Senators behaved. It’s only natural that the Filipino people’s trust in them has so far even worsened. So when someone posted a picture of the new Senate building along with the ‘trash-bin’. The symbolism is just superbly accurate — a trash-bin. Of course, if you think about a Senate with a bunch of clowns like Pacquiao, Gordon, Angara, Sotto or even in the future should these traitors Bong Go, Bato De la Rosa, Larry Gadon etc. Now I see why this design is really made in that way — the perfect fit for maggots.