MANILA – Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon questioned the cost for the design and construction of a stadium cauldron for the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games to be held in the country later this month.
During the deliberation of the proposed 2020 budget of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) on Monday, Drilon said the cost could have constructed 50 classrooms.
“A P50-million kaldero. Do you realize that at P1 million per classroom this can construct 50 classrooms? In other words, we did away with 50 classrooms in exchange for one kaldero, is this a correct conclusion?” the Ilonggo senator said.
“Is that reasonable? Is that a correct prioritization? Each classroom will cost P1 million and just for the kaldero, which should be used only once, we will spend P50 million,” Drilon asked during the Senate budget plenary.
Senator Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, who was defending BCDA’s budget for the next year, said that cauldron’s design amounted to P4.4 million while its foundation was pegged at P13.4 million.
“The production of the cauldron was under the Philippine Sports Commission and was designed by the late Filipino architect Bobby Mañosa,” Angara said.
Drilon then asked Angara if the total cost of the construction of the cauldron is P32 million, to which Angara replied in the affirmative.
“I think what the government is really envisioning was to do a really impressive hosting of the games and showcase the Philippine ingenuity by using Philippine creative designers and performers. I think this is what other Southeast Asian countries have also done when it was their turn to host,” Angara said.
“I think in his hearts of hearts, the good sponsor, good intention as he is, finds difficulty justifying a P50-million kaldero,” Drilon said after hearing Angara’s defense./PN