P100-M campaign fund contributions, a ‘scandal’

YOUTH group Anakbayan said they are “overwhelmed but no longer surprised” re reports that Akbayan had more than P100 million in campaign funds during the 2010 elections.

Comelec documents showed Akbayan  collected  atotal of P112,183,000 in contributions from February 9 to May 8, 2010.

Of Akbayan’s P112M in 2010, 14M came from President Aquino’s sisters.  Kristina Bernadette Aquino-Yap was listed as its biggest contributor, giving P10M.

Anakbayan national chairperson Vencer Crisostomo called the revelation a “scandal.”

“This is obviously a scandalously huge amount for a party-list campaign fund,” he said.

The amount was indeed huge compared to contributions reported by other partylists Bayan Muna (P1.26M), Anakpawis (P750,000), GABRIELA (P1.7M) and Kabataan (P12.1M).

It also matches those of major political parties Liberal Party P158M, Lakas P130M, and Nacionalista Party P80M.

“If true, this proves further the need for Comelec to investigate Akbayan and heed calls for its disqualification. If they could collect an amount this huge when they were still out of power, how much more now that they are in government? There is clearly an unfair advantage over other groups who are truly marginalized and underrepresented, not to mention that their nominees are appointed officials,” said Crisotomo.

Crisostomo said the public should also look into funds of NAPC and other Akbayan-led government agencies.

He called on the COMELEC to stop covering up for Akbayan and Palace-backed party-lists.

“The Akbayan scandal can no longer be ignored or brushed off by the Commission. Allowing Akbayan to run will be fatal for the party-list system and will reflect on the credibility of Comelec. We urge the Comelec to prove its independence from the Palace and make a stand for the people. We call on Grace Padaca to vote in favor of national interest and not based on her previous party ties,” he said.


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