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Comelec budget next year slashed

Manila, Philippines – Rank-and-file employees of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) pushing for a substantial increase in their salaries called yesterday for the restoration of the P215.5 million slashed by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) in the poll body’s proposed budget for 2012.

The Comelec Wage Fight! Alliance said the slashed funds include P164 million in personnel savings that the DBM wants impounded and P51.5 million funds for Overseas Absentee Voting (OAV) that was transferred to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

“The Comelec has exclusive right and responsibility in the exercise of its fiscal autonomy. It has the sole discretion as to how it will spend its funds be it in the discharge of its constitutional mandate to ensure a clean and credible elections or allotted for the welfare of its rank-and-file employees,” Mac Ramirez, convenor of the Comelec Wage Fight! Alliance, said. (Leslie Ann G. Aquino)