The EcoWaste Coalition, a waste and pollution watchdog, has expressed support for the abolition of the pork barrel system through a people’s initiative.
At the multisectoral “Stand Up, Sign Up” rally held in Rizal Park today, the group proudly put up a handmade paper banner that says “zero corruption, zero waste,” their battle cry.
The green activists also wielded walis tingting (broomsticks) to stress the need to sweep out corruption that has seeped into the whole government through the “toxic” pork barrel scheme.
“We reject the toxic pork barrel system that has made corruption and patronage deeply ingrained in our nation’s politics,” said Aileen Lucero, Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition.
“It is toxic because it is acting as or having the effect of a poison, inflicting serious harm to the government and the people it is meant to serve,” she explained.
“By doing away with the pork barrel system, once and for all, we can stop this poison of corruption and injustice and establish accountability and transparency in the government that we crave for,” she added.
“Zero corruption will translate to zero waste of public funds, which should be solely used to improve our people’s quality of life and protect the environment, and not to enrich private pockets,” she emphasized.
The EcoWaste Coalition lamented that the embezzled P10-B pork barrel funds could have been used to support the implementation of underfunded environmental laws such as Republic Act 9003, the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act.
The stolen funds could have been utilized to build grassroots understanding and support for zero waste resource management as envisioned under the said law, the group said.
The plundered funds could have supported efforts to close, clean up and rehabilitate polluting open dumpsites across the country, and their replacement with sustainable and socially just solutions, it added.
Joining the delegation of the EcoWaste Coalition were members of the Cavite Green Coalition and Zero Waste Philippines.