Press Release
February 5, 2010

Statement of Sen Pia Cayetano on minority's boycott
of the Senate's last session day

"As members of the minority, we consider it part of our duty to be fiscalizers in the Senate. As fiscalizers, we will support bills which redound to the benefit of the public and at the same time, block bills which will disadvantage the Filipino people.

"The majority was poised to railroad objectionable measures such as the bills seeking to unduly extend the terms of Pagcor (Philippine Gaming Corp.) and NTC (National Telecommunications Commission) officials appointed under the current administration. These bills are sought to be passed without the benefit of thorough debate by the mere number of the majority bloc.

"Boycotting sessions to block unwarranted bills is part of parliamentary dynamics which is practiced in parliaments of other countries. It is used as the last recourse by the minority, as was the case last Wednesday (Feb.3).

"The majority conveniently forgets that precisely why they are called the majority, is because they have the numbers. It is thus incumbent upon them to ensure that their members are present to support their bills, just as the minority will do what it has to do, in order to prevent the passage of bills which need further study. How convenient it was for the majority to blame the minority for the quorum it failed to muster!

"It is also incorrect for the majority to claim that important bills were not passed. In fact, bills that were earlier filed and given sufficient time for the body to consider were passed. These include the Expanded Breastfeeding Act, Expanded Senior Citizens Act, and the creation of a Persons With Disability (PWDs) affairs office in local government units, all of which I sponsored, and many other measures."

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