Duterte meets with Arroyo, House leaders to discuss pending bills

MANILA Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo met with President Rodrigo Duterte in MalacaAang on Tuesday to discuss several legislative measures pending at the House of Representatives.

In a photo released by the Speaker's Office on Wednesday, Duterte is seen with Arroyo, House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr., Deputy Speaker Arthur Yap, and Special Assistant to the President Christopher "Bong" Go.

During the meeting, Duterte requested Arroyo to include in the 2019 budget the funding for the housing projects for members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National police, as well as the water system for the housing project for the victims of super typhoon Yolanda.

The House of Representatives has already approved on second reading House Bill 8169, or the 2019 General Appropriations Bill, which provides for a national budget of PHP3.757-trillion for next year.

Arroyo, meanwhile, committed to the President the passage of a joint resolution extending the validity of the PHP19.6-billion National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Fund for the rehabilitation of Marawi City until the end of next year.

Also discussed during the meeting was the conduct of a bicameral conference on the coco levy fund bill "to include the wishes of the President."

It was earlier reported that Congress has decided to recall the coco levy bill from the Office of the President to introduce an amendment that would save the measure from being vetoed.

Among the contentious provisions that the Palace wanted to be addressed include the composition of the council that will manage the funds and the additional PHP10-billion allotment that would come from the General Appropriations Act. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency