Press Release
August 5, 2006


Noting that the Senate has certified only 20 bills in two years, Senator Edgardo J. Angara today encouraged fellow lawmakers to bring back the purpose and prestige of lawmaking.

As lawmakers, we have to do something to redeem ourselves in the eyes of the general public because the Senate is a valuable institution, Angara said.

Senates primary role is to produce well-drafted and strategic policies. If the legislative year is on its end, and we cant produce meaningful laws, then, we are of no use as a legislative institution. The Senate has been a beacon of hope for many years. It should continue to work towards uplifting the lives of common Filipinos through meaningful legislation, he continued.

Angara also noted the results of survey on Senates net performance conducted by Social Weather Station for the last quarter of last year. Although it remained positive, public satisfaction with the legislative branch dropped to positive 14 in December 2005 from positive 20 in September 2005. He also noted that the public lacks consensus on the best person to lead the country, based from Pulse Asias March 2006 Ulat ng Bayan Survey.

How are we going to inspire young idealistic people if theres no political leader who they can look up to and consider as a model of public servant? Angara asked.

Angara said that Filipinos today have learned to ignore politicians commenting that this may be good because people can go on with their lives unmolested; but they may no longer appreciate the role of politicians as policy makers.

We dont really have a genuine political party system in this country. What we actually have are loose alliances of factions based on personalities, and not on platforms and programs, values and convictions, Angara explained.

He also said that a global survey conducted by the Gallup World Poll in 2004 revealed that the level of public trust of politicians enjoyed a meager respect.

Traditionally, elections here are driven by patronage and personality and not by platforms and programs. As long as we dont set up a proper party system in our country, bad politicians and bad party system will continue to thrive, Angara said.

Angara authored the Philippine Political Party Development Act which institutionalizes reforms in the financing of electoral campaigns in order to promote accountability and transparency. The bill also institutionalizes a framework to govern the system of political parties to make them more effective instruments of good governance and public service.

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