Lacson claps back at Duterte’s statement that Senate inquiries are all in vain

Maris Federez   •   August 27, 2021   •   372

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson has belied the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte that inquiries conducted by the Senate never ended up going anywhere.

Lacson said the general public has been enjoying a significant number of laws that the Senate has enacted based on the inquiries and investigations conducted by the upper chamber of Congress.

The Senator, in a seeming swipe at the President, told the chief executive to review the separation of powers in government.

“Magbasa rin muna siya tungkol sa doktrina ng Separation of Powers at Checks and Balances ng Ehekutibo, Kongreso at Hudikatura bago niya kami pakialaman sa Senado,” Lacson said.

The President, Lacson said, should instead focus his attention on the performance of the Cabinet, not just in addressing the pandemic but also in other aspects of governance.

“Sa halip, asikasuhin niya ang mga kakulangan ng sangay ng gobyerno na kanyang pinamumunuan na hitik sa incompetence at corruption, hindi lang sa pagtugon sa pandemya kundi sa maraming aspeto ng governance,” he said.

Lacson also expressed his disappointment that the President has been the one defending his officials who are the subject of their investigation, instead of being the one to charge these officials for their inaction or poor performance.

“Kaya hindi nakakasuhan ang ilang matataas na opisyal na naging subject ng pag-iimbestiga namin ay dahil ipinagtatanggol niya sa halip na makasuhan,” he said.

“Hindi trabaho ng Senado ang magsampa ng demanda. Trabaho ng Executive Branch iyon. Judiciary naman ang magpapakulong. Mahirap bang i-memorize yan?” Lacson added. —/mbmf

Duterte calls on ASEAN countries to stand with Myanmar amid coup crisis

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 28, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte has called on member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to stand with Myanmar amid its coup crisis.

During the 39th ASEAN Summit, Duterte urged all parties in Myanmar to heed the ASEAN’s plea for peace.

“The Philippines urges all parties in Myanmar to engage in constructive dialogue with ASEAN. We are, after all, an ASEAN family. And if we cannot trust each other and work together, then who can Myanmar trust and work with?” he said.

He also urged ASEAN’s special envoy to visit Myanmar soon and meet all the parties involved.

Duterte expressed concern about Myanmar’s rejection of ASEAN’s sincere offers of assistance, stating that it may undermine the mutual trust and confidence that ASEAN-member states share.

Meanwhile, the president said the Philippines will commit to help individuals caught up in “situations beyond their control”.

“Our doors are open to our Rohingya brothers and sisters and other peoples of Myanmar who seek refuge,” he said. AAC

Duterte wants LGU officials to convince constituents to get vaccinated

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday urged local government officials to ramp up their respective COVID-19 vaccination programs.

“I urge LGUs to come up with the most systematic and efficient way of finding out who among your constituents have not yet vaccinated. Please do everything to convince them to get vaccinated,” he said during his weekly public address.

Duterte reported that as of October 24, the country has administered 55.7 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, where around 30 million were given as first doses and 25 million as second doses.

He added that the national government aims to fully vaccinate 50 million citizens by the end of the year.

“We also need to ramp up vaccination rate in various LGUs in order to reach our target of inoculating 50 million fully-vaccinated individuals by the end of the year,” Duterte said.

The president added that vaccine supply allocated for far-flung provinces must not expire and should preserve its integrity.

” Yung mga bakuna na sana umabot na doon sa pinakamalayong lugar and the provincial, city, and
municipal health officials will take over. Ang concern ko lang naman is that they would be able to preserve the integrity of the vaccines. That is very important. Ibig sabihin na hindi expired, walang sira, hindi ma-contaminate and all,” he said. AAC

Duterte welcomes Senate panel’s move to challenge his memo before SC

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday (October 25) welcomed the move of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee to challenge his memorandum before the Supreme Court (SC).

Duterte assured they will defend the memorandum prohibiting Executive Department officials from attending the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearings on the procurement of pandemic supplies. The Senate panel wants to challenge the legality of Duterte’s said memo.

“At last, the members of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee have finally seen the light. We welcome this move of bringing the legality of the memorandum to the Supreme Court and we would like to congratulate the members for realizing, albeit late. That it is the court which should eventually decide on the constitutionality of the order and we will defend it,” the President said during his weekly public address aired Monday night.

“This is by far the most decent thing the committee has done and we are most eager to answer whatever questions you have regarding my not allowing officials of the Executive to attend your hearings that are legislative purposes,” he added.

The president again criticized the panel’s way of questioning resource persons, saying executive officials are made to wait for a long time but are not called to speak.

“Iyong mga tao ko sa gobyerno, iyong ipinapatawag ninyo at pahintayin ninyo ng ilang oras at hindi naman ninyo tatawagin at kung nandoon iniinsulto ninyo, para bang walang alam,” he said.

Duterte added that the SC is the only venue where the disagreement with the Senate panel may be settled.

“You have to be courteous if you want to be treated with courtesy,” he said. AAC

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