The 2014 Budget: What’s in it for the Youth?

Prof. Leonor Briones.
(Photo: SW)

After President Noynoy Aquino’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, July 22, PNoy’s proposed budget for 2014 will be under scrutiny in a forum to be held at the University of the Philippines National College of Public Administration and Governance Assembly Hall. SW Coordinating Committee Co-chair, Former National Treasurer and budget expert Professor Emeritus Leonor Magtolis Briones will be the guest speaker in the forum.

Entitled “#Kabataan Roadtrip: Sa’n na Tayo Nakarating, Sa’n na Tayo Papunta?”, the public forum will focus on the government’s allocations and priorities for the youth. It is primarily organized by UP Samahan Tungo sa Progresibong Administrasyon (UP STPA), a socio-academic organization of public administration students of UP NCPAG. They are partnered with Social Watch Philippines, the People’s Public Finance Institute, the Alternative Budget Initiative, PALS NCPAG and the University Student Council.

UP STPA is a duly recognized organization in UP that promotes academic excellence and critical awareness, and the delivery of genuine public service from the government. The forum is part of the organization’s celebration of its 25th anniversary this year. The organization is a two-time Gawad Chancellor Awardee for Most Outstanding Student Organization in UP.

Social Watch Philippines, on the other hand, is an organization that puts forward strategies of budget advocacy, awareness-building, and monitoring human development and networking in the field of people’s participation in public finance and people’s empowerment. The organization has a network of over 100 CSOs and individuals in the Philippines and overseas.

SWP also spearheaded the People’s Public Finance Institute and the Alternative Budget Initiative, which advocate budget reform in the government and citizens’ participation in the planning, implementation and monitoring of public finance. The ABI has produced alternative budgets and analyses for legislators in scrutinizing and finalizing the national budget.

The public forum will focus primarily on the 2014 proposed budget’s allocations for the youth as well as an assessment of the budget in the past years. Other subjects will be the administration’s planned expansion of the Conditional Cash Transfer Program or the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, Special Purpose Funds, the pork barrel and allocations for the administrative departments.

“We need to scrutinize the budget because it’s our money,” said Prof. Briones. She added, “It is also the most powerful instrument of government in solving our country’s toughest problems: poverty, climate change and unemployment.”

Source: Social Watch Philippines, 17 July 2013