#ThewRap: Things you need to know, January 24, 2018

Hello! Here's a roundup of news you need to know this Wednesday.

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Hello!

Hope your Wednesday's good, Rappler readers!

The debate over the Senate and House participation in amending the 1987 Constitution continues. Amid insistence by House leadership that they can bypass the Senate, former Senate President Nene Pimentel tells Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez to "re-read" the charter and understand it better. Malacañang also chimed in and said the two houses of Congress should reach a consensus on the matter.

Can Filipinos alone explore Benham Rise? In Malacañang's view, we can't, and China will be a big help. This was the Palace's defense for approving China's research on the controversial maritime territory. This, as the administration says the Philippines has sovereign rights over the rise, but can't claim it as part of its territory.

Meanwhile, classes, work, and flights have been suspended in Albay as Mayon Volcano continues to be restless, with the frequency of ash and lava explosions increasing as the days go by. People in Albay and in neighboring provinces are on alert, as government scientists continue monitoring the restive volcano.

These, and more stories, are in today's wRap.

Bypass Senate? Nene Pimentel tells Alvarez to re-read Constitution

"Basahin niya ulit yung Constitution sapagkat that is not what is envisioned," former Senate president Nene Pimentel tells House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez who insists the could change the charter without the Senate.

WATCH: Timelapse of Mayon Volcano spewing lava, ash

Lava and ash shoot up from one of the Philippines' most active volcanoes, Mayon, amid fears of a violent explosion.

Malacañang says Filipinos need China for Benham Rise research

Filipinos alone can't conduct research in the resource-rich underwater plateau because they don't have the needed capital, says Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque.

SC says LTO can release 700,000 license plates

Around 700,000 license plates can now be released to motorists after the Supreme Court (SC) lifted the temporary restraining order (TRO) it issued in 2016.

IN PHOTOS: Ballot retrieval in CamSur for Marcos-Robredo election case

Ballot boxes from Camarines Sur precincts are to be delivered to the Presidential Electoral Tribunal Retrieval Team until January 26.

DFA opens 100,000 new slots for passport appointments

Heeding online hubbub about the shortage of slots and complaints about fixers selling slots, the Department of Foreign Affairs opens additional ones until June.

Sessions questioned in Russia probe as FBI accused of bias

US attorney general Jeff Sessions was named Tuesday, January 23, as the first member of Donald Trump's cabinet to be questioned in the probe into allegations of Russian election meddling, as a report said the president himself could face an interview request within weeks.

Top photo courtesy Phivolcs

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