Aquino to senators: please get back to work
MANILA, Philippines -- Amid the raging word war among members of the Senate over "cash gifts," President Aquino said on Saturday, January 26, he will ask senators "in a very respectful tone" to focus on passing pending bills.
"So, actually, pag-uwi ko, makikiusap ako sa ating co-equal branch na puwede ba tayong mag-concentrate na itabi muna natin ‘yung ating personal issues, mayroong issues ang bansa na kailangang asikasuhin," Aquino said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
(When I come back, I will appeal to our co-equal branch, if we can concentrate and set aside personal issues [as] there are national issues that have to be attended to.)
Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile has been embroiled in a bitter word war with 4 senators, who were excluded last December from the P1.6-M in additional allocations for Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE).
Last week, the verbal tussle culminated with Enrile and Sen Alan Cayetano digging past personal issues and dragging other names into the feud, leading to the resignation of Enrile's chief of staff, Gigi Reyes.
AMLA, Marcos compensation bill
There are only 6 days left in the legislative calendar before lawmakers go on a long break for the campaign period.
Aquino wants lawmakers to pass amendments to the Anti-Money Laundering Act, especially since the Financial Action Task Force is set to review the country's commitment to its standards on anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism.
"We don't want any hindrance in our ability to be able to really participate in the world financial market and furtherance of our economic objectives," Aquino said.
He also wants lawmakers to act on the Marital Law victims compensation bill, which is due for ratification by both chambers of Congress.
"There are many pending (bills) in the legislature. If we are not able to pass the (bills)...we will go back to square one," Aquino said.
Not keen on certifying FOI as urgent
While the Senate has passed the Freedom of Information bill on 3rd and final reading, the House of Representatives has yet to sponsor its version on the floor.
Even with only 6 session days left, Aquino is not keen on certifying FOI as urgent as debates have not even started on the floor. - Rappler.com