Malacañang expects Go, Bato, Tolentino to be independent as senators
Robie de Guzman • May 16, 2019 • 1611
MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Thursday (May 16) said it expects incoming senators, particularly those who are close allies of President Rodrigo Duterte, to be independent when it comes to issues involving national interest.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the statement following concerns that the check and balances in government may be affected as administration-backed Senate bets look set to join the upper chamber of Congress.
Partial and unofficial count from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) showed that nine Senate bets endorsed by Duterte are in the top 12.
These are reelectionist Senator Cynthia Villar, former special assistant to the president Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, former Philippine National Police chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, former presidential adviser Francis Tolentino, House Deputy Speaker Pia Cayetano, reelectionist senators Sonny Angara and Koko Pimentel, Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos and former Senator Bong Revilla.
Three of them – Go, Dela Rosa and Tolentino – are known close allies of Duterte.
Panelo, however, believes that the three will do their job well and always put first the best interest of the nation.
“It’s just happened that they are very close to the president but that doesn’t mean they will be subservient,” he said.
“Whether or not Senate or Congress is dominated by the allies of whoever is incumbent, we expect them to pass economic reforms that will be beneficial to the Filipino people. The issue on whether you are an ally or not should not be discussed,” he added.
Panelo stressed that the mandate of the Congress is to pass laws that will be beneficial for the people.
“It’s about time to eradicate the discussion on parties’ consideration. That is where we fail,” he said.
Aside from Duterte’s allies, other senatorial candidates who are in the winners’ circle based on partial tally are reelectionist senators Grace Poe, Nancy Binay, and former senator Lito Lapid. (with details from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang said it will abide by whatever the decision of the Supreme Court (SC) regarding the electoral protest filed by former Senator Bongbong Marcos against Vice President Leni Robredo.
“Whatever the decision of the court, we should abide by it,” noted Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.
In 2016, Marcos accused Robredo of “massive cheating” in the 2016 elections.
He lost to Robredo by some 260,000 votes, but Robredo’s camp said her lead over Marcos grew by 15,000 votes after the initial recount.
On Tuesday (October 14), the PET ordered the release of a report on the initial recount of votes.
“Hayaan ninyo na sila (Let them be). We’ll just wait and let the parties argue their case in court and PET will have to render its decision,” he added. – MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
In boxing, Nesthy Petecio won the gold medal in the 2019 AIBA Women’s Boxing World Championships in Ulan-Ude, Russia on Sunday (October 13).
Meanwhile, Eumir Marcial won silver in the 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships last September.
“Isa lang ibig sabihin noon, magaling tayo kahit na every now and then (It only means one thing, that we are great—even if it’s just every now and then),” Panelo said.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
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