NIA cornered almost half of GOCC subsidies in August
The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) cornered almost half of the subsidies given away by the national government in August, the latest Bureau of the Treasury data showed.
Of the P6.085-billion subsidies for government-owned and/or -controlled corporations (GOCCs) that month, P2.818 billion or 46 percent of the total went to the NIA.
The GOCC mainly responsible for irrigation development and management in the country, the NIA also received the biggest share of subsidies during the months of January, February and May.
As of the end of the first eight months, P23.887 billion in subsidies were granted to the NIA, equivalent to 29 percent of the end-August total of P81.171 billion and only exceeded by Philippine Health Insurance Corp.’s (PhilHealth) P24.377 billion.
Last year, the NIA was the second largest recipient of GOCC subsidies, also after PhilHealth.
To recall, President Duterte during his campaign promised free irrigation for farmers.
As such, the NIA was allocated a higher P38.4 billion under the 2017 national budget not only to provide free irrigation but also to build new irrigation systems as well as rehabilitate and restore existing facilities.
An additional allocation of P2 billion was intended as irrigation fee subsidy in lieu of the collection of irrigation service fees.
The NIA had been collecting P1.8-2 billion in irrigation service fees yearly, according to reports. /cbb
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.