Sen. Bam Aquino challenged the administration to join forces with the opposition and work together to solve the rice and price crises.
“Imbis na magturuan, harapin natin ang krisis na nagpapahirap sa bayan,” said Sen. Bam during his privilege speech on the rising prices of goods and rice in the country.
“Nasa kamay po ng administrasyon ang pagpapatupad ng mga programa ng gobyerno. Tutukan sana ng gabinete ng Presidente para mabigyan ng ginhawa ang pamilyang Pilipino,” added Sen. Bam, one of four senators who voted against the ratification of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law.
Sen. Bam clarified that the opposition has been in talks not to overthrow the government, but to address the price and rice issues through “Oplan Ginhawa”.
“Ang tunay na plano ng oposisyon ay magsama-sama, gawin ang lahat ng aming kayang gawin, ibigay ang lahat na kaya naming ibigay para hindi na po malunod sa gastos at hindi mamatay sa hirap at gutom ang ating mga kababayan,” said Sen. Bam.
Under the “Oplan Ginhawa”, Sen. Bam gave three proposals to the administration to address the growing inflation and high prices of rice and ease the burden of the Filipino people, especially the poor.
First, Sen. Bam urged the government to fully implement the social mitigating measures under the TRAIN Law, including the unconditional cash transfer program, Pantawid Pasada Program and the 10-percent discount on NFA rice.
Sen. Bam also called on the government to replace incompetent NFA officials with people who can help fulfil the agency’s mandate, including the immediate return of the 15-day buffer stock.
Third, Sen. Bam renewed is call for the passage of his Senate Bill No. 1798 or the Bawas Presyo Bill to stop the second round of increase in excise tax on petroleum products under the TRAIN Law in January 2019.
“Basta’t pagtulungan ng Kongreso — at certified urgent ng taumbayan at sana po ng Pangulo – kaya natin gawing batas ito bago mag-Pasko,” said Sen. Bam.
“Tama na, sobra na ang pahirap sa taumbayan. Pagtulungan po natin ang Oplan Ginhawa. Pagtulungan natin ang mga solusyon sa krisis na ito,” Sen. Bam added.