Press Release
April 22, 2009

Enrile withdraws Senate Bill No. 3123

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile withdrew on Wednesday evening his authorship of Senate Bill No. 3123 entitled : "An Act Increasing the Number of Membership in the House of Representatives, and for Other Purposes" following the Supreme Court decision increasing to 55 the number of seats in the House of Representatives for Party List groups.

"I decided to withdraw my bill which I filed on March 9, 2009, since there is now a definitive formula from the Supreme Court to serve as our guide," Enrile said.

The Supreme Court decision states that "This formula (referring to the ratio of party- list representatives to the total number of representatives ) allows for the corresponding increase in the number of seats available for party- list representatives whenever a legislative district is created by law."

"With this formula promulgated by the Supreme Court, there's no need for a general law to increase the number of seats in the House of Representatives," Enrile said in a press conference.

"In effect, the Supreme Court has ruled that the enactment by Congress of laws creating legislative districts operates in itself to increase the number of seats in the House of Representatives and that there is no need for the enactment of a general law increasing the number of seats beyond the 250 seats originally prescribed by the Constitution," Enrile added.

Enrile's withdrawal of his bill was contained in a letter addressed to Senator Francis Escudero, chairman of the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments, Revision of Codes and Laws, where Senate Bill 3123 was referred to.

"I'm relieved that this urgent concern of Congress was finally resolved by the Supreme Court," Enrile pointed out.

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