Press Release
May 30, 2010


Minority Leader Aquilino Q. Pimentel, Jr. today doubted whether the Senate can still tackle and approve any legislative measure when the Senate meets Monday.

Pimentel said the plan to approve supposedly 10 non-controversial legislative measures during the plenary session, as contained in a list of agenda prepared by Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, is contrary to an earlier statement of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile that no pending bills will be taken up by the chamber when it reconvenes after the May l0 elections to canvass the votes cast for the presidential and vice presidential candidates.

As enumerated in a notice for the session issued by the majority leader, the Senate will supposedly approve on third reading five Senate proposals and five House proposals mostly on the creation of schools.

Apparently, Pimentel said Zubiri has been requested by his friends from the House of Representatives to have certain pending bills approved by the Senate.

"The problem is the moment you accede to any request for the approval of certain bills or resolutions, even if they are non-controversial, this could trigger similar requests from other lawmakers for the approval of other measures. But we may not have the time to act on pending bills since we are pressed for time to canvass the votes and proclaim the new president and vice president before June 30," he said.

Pimentel said he initially discussed this matter with Sen. Joker Arroyo who told him he is not in favor of putting the pending bills on the agenda for Monday's session.

He said the report on the NBN-ZTE deal has already been overtaken by the Ombudsman's move to elevate to the Sandiganbayan its decision to file graft charges against former Commission on Elections chairman and former National Economic and Development Authority director general Romulo Neri (now administrator of the Social Security System.

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