Criticisms on Senate’s slow passage of bills, not an issue – SP Pimentel
UNTV News • January 9, 2018 • 3811
MANILA, Philippines – Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon has expressed concern over the negative remarks of the leadership of the Lower House against the Senate.
Drilon said the Lower House should not attack the upper chamber of Congress as this will violate the inter-chamber courtesy.
He added that the criticisms may be part of the move that is pushing for charter change.
“Sa aking tingin (in my view), beyond the criticisms – unfounded as it is – of the pace of the Senate would act on these measures, I think this is part of the effort para pababain ang tingin ng tao sa Senado (to undermine people’s perception of the Senate). Para pagdating nuong charter change, kung ibig nilang burahin ang Senado sa pamahalaan e madali na (So that when charter change comes and they want to get rid of the Senate, it will be easier),” Drilon said.
Senate President Aquilino ‘Koko’ Pimentel, however, said he doesn’t see any issue on the matter.
“I feel I have defended the Senate already. Kung kulang pa din (if it’s still not enough), all members are free to defend the Senate,” he said.
The Senate president added that anyone, including the leadership of the Lower House, should enjoy his freedom of expression.
Pimentel said the Senate continues to do its mandate and, to prove his point, he said it will tackle the proposed death penalty in the plenary when the session resumes on January 15.
He also said a resolution which will call on Congress to convene as a constituent assembly will also be filed on the resumption of the session.
“It’s a resolution calling for the senate to sit together with the House of Representatives as constituent assembly for the purpose of revising the 1987 Constitution, specifically to study the adaption of a federal system of government,” Pimentel said.
The leadership of the Senate believes the push for the charter change will succeed so as the proposal to change the form of government from presidential to federalism. – Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue
MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang dismissed Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon’s claim that the administration’s Build Build Build program is a dismal failure.
Drilon claimed that the administration has only started nine out of 75 flagship projects in the past three years in office.
“It is sad to say that the BBB program of the administration is a dismal failure. Out of the 75 flagship projects that were proposed at the start of the administration, exactly nine started construction,” Drilon told reporters.
“That is only two percent of the total,” he added.
But Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo was quick to dismiss Drilon’s claim as baseless stressing that the Duterte administration had accomplished more than the previous administration.
“Senator Frank, look at the administration you previously belonged. Six years, not a single infrastructure na nagawa (was completed). Malayong-malayo sa dami [nang nagawa ng administrasyon ngayon] (It doesn’t compare with the achievements of this administration),” Panelo said.
“It’s baseless […] maraming ginagawa ang administrasyon (this administration is working on a lot of projects),” he added.
Malacañang believes that the current management of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is effectively handling these projects.
Thus, Panelo said the Palace is confident that before President Rodrigo Duterte ends his term, majority of the projects under the Build, Build, Build program will be completed. MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)
Some senators are still not sold on the idea of instilling changes in the 1987 Constitution in the 18th Congress.
This, despite President Rodrigo Duterte’s manifestations of pursuing the charter change.
Senator Franklin Drilon said it is still uncertain as to how senators will vote on the proposed constitutional amendment.
Drilon said, “(It is) difficult to predict at this time how the senators will vote. Senate prides itself as independent of Malacañang.”
“Plus, I sense that a number of my colleagues have a “moist eye” on the Presidency in 2022, and may not support an amendment which may lead to a shift to federalism,” he added.
Liberal Party president, Senator Francis Pangilinan, who held the chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments and Revision of Codes, meanwhile, said the fate of the charter change will depend on composition of the Senate.
“That all depends on the majority. We will see how it goes given the new composition of the Senate,” Pangilinan said.
Senator Ralph Recto, on the other hand, said he still wants to have the cha-cha proposal scrutinized.
“We’ll have to take a look at details of the cha-cha proposal,” he said.
Senator Panfilo Lacson, meanwhile, believes that majority of the senators have not wavered in their stance regarding the charter change.
“It’s a little more complicated than what the President and the House want. Why? We are simply back to the same question, which is to clarify the ambiguity of the provision in the Constitution that deals with the manner of voting by Congress constituting itself into a constituent assembly,” Lacson said.
He further said, “Again, in doing so, we are faced with a chicken and egg situation. If it’s via ConCom, do we have enough time to accomplish it before the end of his term?”
Neophyte senator Francis Tolentino, however, believes that the passage of the proposed change in the form of government can still happen during President Duterte’s term.
“Tapos na yung preparatory work ng ConCom. Yung ginawa ni former Justice Puno [The preparatory work in ConCom is finished. What former Justice Puno did], it was commissioned by the executive branch. May napadala na silang report at nasa infancy stage na yung kauna unahang version nito yung sa Bangsamoro. Hindi pa siguro huli ang lahat [They were able to send their report and the very first version of it – the Bangsamor- is already at the infancy stage. Maybe it’s not yet too late,” Tolentino said.
The proposed charter change was able to slightly move in the Lower House during the 17th Congress.
It was, however, stalled in the Senate until the Congress adjourned. (with reports from Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf
The members of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) are leaving it to President Rodrigo Duterte as to who he will pick as the party’s bet for the Lower House Leadership.
Senator Manny Pacquiao said he will meet with the President before he flies for the United States on Saturday in preparation for his boxing match.
He said that he will ask the President to decide as to who the party’s candidate for the House Speakership in the 18th Congress should be.
Senator Pacquiao said, “kasi kung magsuggest ang pangulo ng hindi PDP, iyon saka ako magsa-suggest na kailangang PDP. Kasi PDP ang pangulo natin.”
[Because if the President will suggest someone who is not (from) PDP, then I will suggest (to him) that it must be from PDP. Because our president is (from) PDP.]
The senator added that the party’s primary criteria for the next House leader are loyalty and his/her continued support to the programs of the president.”
Senator Pacquiao also responded to the criticisms thrown at him by House Minority Leader Danny Suarez, accusing him of meddling with the affairs of the Lower House.
This is in relation to the senator’s meeting with three aspirants for the House speakership.
“Hindi naman ako nakikialam. Nakikialam ako as kapartido PDP. Kailangang ayusin talaga. Kung siya ay PDP rin dapat tumulong rin siya para ayusin ang problema kasi kahihiyan ng partido yan kapag hindi nagkakaisa ang isang Partido. So iyon ang dapat isipin niya na disiplinahin natin,” Senator Pacquiao said.
[It’s not that I was meddling. I intervene as a member of the PDP. We need to iron things out. If he is a PDP member, he should also help to thresh the problem out because it will put the party in a bad light if we are not united. That’s what he should think about to discipline.]
The three aspirants from the ruling party are Davao del Norte Representative Pantaleon Alvarez, Pampanga Representative Aurelio Gonzales, and Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco.
Other contenders are Leyte Representative Martin Romualdez of Lakas-CMD and Taguig City Representative Alan Peter Cayetano of the Nacionalista Party.
Senator Pacquiao said that he may announce their candidate for the House Speakership within this week. (with reports from Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf
UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.