Senate of the Philippines

Marcos endorses Escudero’s Senate presidency after Zubiri’s ouster

Dwight de Leon

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Marcos endorses Escudero’s Senate presidency after Zubiri’s ouster

Graphics by Raffy de Guzman/Rappler

Zubiri resigned from the Senate presidency after losing the numbers needed to retain the country's third highest post – a downfall which he partly blames on his decision to allow a Senate investigation into the alleged links of President Marcos to illegal drugs

MANILA, Philippines – In his first statement since the dramatic change of leadership in the upper chamber, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said he backs the election of Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero as Senate president.

“I extend my support to the new Senate President, Chiz Escudero. His legislative record and commitment to public service have distinguished him as a dedicated leader,” Marcos said on Tuesday, May 21.

“Senator Chiz steps into this role following the commendable tenure of Senator Migz Zuburi, and I am confident that under his leadership, the Senate will continue to prioritize transformative laws to achieve our shared vision for a Bagong Pilipinas (New Philippines),” he added.

Zubiri resigned from the country’s third highest post on Monday, May 20, after he was told by his colleagues that he no longer had the numbers to keep the Senate presidency.

Zubiri said he saw it coming, believing that his abrupt exit was caused by his decision to allow the Senate investigation into the allegedly leaked documents linking President Marcos to the illegal drug trade.

“You know we’re not enemy of the powers that be. But because we’re not following instructions, we were targeted,” Zubiri said on Monday.

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After four hearings, the panel led by Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa failed to establish that the incumbent chief executive was involved in illegal drugs, and his colleagues, including Escudero, dismissed the allegation as hearsay.

The Senate is composed of a super majority bloc who supports the President, and historically, the chief executive’s allies in Congress do not go behind his back to install their own Senate president or House Speaker without the President’s approval. –

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Dwight de Leon

Dwight de Leon is a multimedia reporter who covers President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the Malacañang, and the Commission on Elections for Rappler.