Malacañang: No need for Senate OK on PH withdrawal from ICC
MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque insisted on Thursday, March 15, that there is no need for President Rodrigo Duterte to consult with the Senate on withdrawing the Philippines' membership from the International Criminal Court (ICC).
"There's no obligation to do so. Is there anything that says that the executive needs to consult with the Senate when we withdraw from a treaty? Nothing," Roque said during a Palace press briefing.
The other day, Malacañang made public Duterte's press statement in which he declared the country's withdrawal as a state party to the Rome Statute, the treaty that created the ICC. (FULL TEXT: Duterte's statement on Int'l Criminal Court withdrawal)
Duterte said his decision is effective "immediately" despite the provision in the treaty that state withdrawal takes effect only one year after notice is given to the United Nations secretary-general. (READ: IBP: Scrutinize Duterte decision to withdraw from Int'l Criminal Court first)
"The reason why Senate consent is not necessary is the Constitution does not provide it's necessary," said Roque.
The authority to withdraw from a treaty rests with the President as the country's top diplomat, added the spokesman.
"That is a decision to be made by the President as the chief architect of foreign policy," he said. (READ: Roque once thanked Aquino for PH membership in Int'l Criminal Court)
There had been efforts in the Senate to ensure that the Philippine president needs the chamber's concurrence before they can withdraw from a treaty or international agreement.
In February 2017, 14 senators filed Senate Resolution No. 289 with this in mind.
"A treaty or international agreement ratified by the President and concurred in by the Senate becomes part of the law of the land and may not be undone without the shared power that put it into effect," the resolution states.
But neophyte senator Manny Pacquiao, a Duterte ally, blocked it. – Rappler.com
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