Press Release
October 9, 2018

Drilon to Congress: Instead of dancing Cha-cha, focus on inflation

Congress should stop wasting its time on Charter change and instead focus on the problems of inflation, high prices, lack of jobs, and rising criminality, according to Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon on Tuesday.

"In this time of high prices, swelling inflation, lack of jobs, extreme poverty, and rising criminality, we need self-serving political maneuverings like we need hole in the head," Drilon said.

Instead of indulging in opportunistic political maneuvering like lifting the term limits of legislators, Drilon urged his fellow legislators to now focus on the problems of inflation, high prices and lack of jobs.

"We can do more to slow down the increasing prices of commodities, including endorsing a joint resolution of Congress to suspend excise taxes on petroleum products," Drilon said.

Drilon stressed that prices of basic commodities will continue to increase as there are no signs that the rise in prices of crude oil in the world market would taper off.

In an interview earlier, Drilon said that the House draft federal charter will suffer the fate of "dead on arrival."

"There is simply no time for us to look at it and that's why I said it's dead on arrival," said Drilon, adding that there are a lot of oppositions to amend the Constitution.

He also noted that "the comfort level of the public for Congress to act as a constituent assembly is very low."

Drilon also reiterated his strong opposition to proposals to lift term limits of Congress members under the House draft charter, saying "they are self-serving and smacks of conflict of interests."

"I am opposed to that, as I have opposed it from the very start," he said.

The minority leader also thumbed down the draft's provision removing the Vice President from the line of succession and instead placing the Senate President in charge in case the President is unable to lead the transition government.

"I don't find the proposal logical. If they want stability, then the more that we should follow the well-defined succession to the Office of the President; otherwise, there will be instability because as I've said, the Senate President can be replaced anytime," Drilon said.

Meanwhile, the senator condemned the killing of Ozamis City Judge Edmundo Pinclac and challenged the Philippine National Police to immediately arrest the killers.

"We cannot afford to let criminal elements intimidate members of the judiciary with violence as we must uphold the rule of law at all times. The state of violence and the unabated killings in our country today is alarming. The PNP must step up its law enforcement efforts," Drilon said.

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