Former Finance Undersecretary Cielo Magno Questioned President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. House Bill 8980

The alleged removal of Undersecretary Cielo Magno from Malacañang has become a news headline, as her tenure was said to have “expired.” Following this, she posted on Facebook, exposing economic graft related to the price cap imposed on rice by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Cielo Magno

The excessive increase in rice prices has recently become a major concern, exceeding 50 pesos per kilo. This forced Marcos to implement a price cap due to public complaints, especially since it was one of his campaign promises to lower rice prices to 20 pesos per kilo.

According to Magno, she has been pressured to resign from her position at Malacañang since July of this year due to her affiliation with former Vice President Leni Robredo, who is a strong opponent of Marcos. Magno stated, “I was asked to resign, because of a post on Facebook, by Secretary Diokno with an instruction from Malacañang.”

Soaring Rice Prices

Finance Secretary Diokno recruited Magno to become Finance Secretary, and Diokno admitted that he would like Magno to stay in her position, but he couldn’t do anything about it. After leaving her post as Finance Undersecretary, Cielo Magno returned to teaching at the University of the Philippines.

Yesterday Malacañang issued House Bill 8980, also known as the 2024 General Appropriations Bill, as urgent legislation. This move allows the House to pass HB 8980 on its second and third readings in just one day, bypassing the usual three-day gap between the two readings.

House Bill 8980

Cielo Magno questioned, “According to our Constitution, a bill can be certified as urgent if it is necessary to address an emergency or public calamity. What emergency or calamity is the basis for this?”

Some of us may have similar questions, especially since the Confidential Budget’s destination and legality continue to be questioned. Amid economic difficulties and rising prices, we, as citizens, hope to benefit as well. We cannot blame Cielo Magno for her reaction, as she is an ordinary citizen with the right to express her concerns, especially considering her past involvement with the Finance Department.

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