MANILA, Philippines – Two neophyte senators, and an action star-turned-politician are among the new members of the powerful body vetting presidential appointments.
Senators Juan Edgardo Angara, Nancy Binay, Lito Lapid, and senior lawmaker Senator Gregorio Honasan II took their oath as members of the Commission on Appointments (CA) on Wednesday, March 11.
The oath-taking was conducted during a caucus of the commission meant to reorganize the body 9 months after the detention of former CA members Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Jinggoy Estrada, along with Senator Ramon Revilla Jr over the pork barrel corruption scam.
The reorganization comes as President Benigno Aquino III is set to make appointments to key posts in government including the chairpersons of the Commission on Elections, Commission on Audit, and Civil Service Commission, whose heads recently finished their terms.
The CA is a bicameral body composed of 24 members mandated to screen appointments of the President to the Cabinet, constitutional commissions, ambassadors, top military officers, and other officials. The Senate President heads the body.
The impending appointment and confirmation of the heads of the constitutional bodies will be a challenge to members of the body traditionally known for arbitrary delays, horse-trading and even corruption.
It is Angara’s and Binay’s first time to join the CA as senators. CA membership is usually given to senior lawmakers based on proportional representation of political parties. – Rappler.com