Press Release
January 18, 2017

Transcript of Interview with Senate President Pro-Tempore Franklin M. Drilon

Q: On the amendments to the Revised Penal Code

SFMD: What we are doing is to revise the Revised Penal Code so it will not constitute a cruel punishment the injustice today is that the values of the property upon which penalty is based is circa 1930's. The P250 in 1930 is still the P250 today that will expose you to a penalty of, say, six years. We will now find out by how much we will raise the P250 so it is commensurate to the penalty that is impose. We can multiply the P250 by, say, 200 times.

Q: Itataas yung value, pero hindi ibababa yung parusa?

SFMD: Hindi ibababa yung parusa kung hindi itataas yung value ng pera noon sa p era ngayon.

Q: Retroactive yan?

R SFMD: etroactive iyan. As stated by the Public Attorney's Office, it will benefit about 50,000 prisoners today, who may have been unjustly convicted, or serving sentence for a long period of time, because the values were not adjusted. We are not saying that they will be released. What we are saying is that their sentences may be reduced, or maybe they have already served the whole period, so the may be benefited. There are 50,000 that will be benefited but not necessarily that 50,000 will be released.

Q: Sa tingin ninyo, kalian ito maipapasa sa Senado?

SFMD: We will submit the report before the month is over. We will try to have it passed before we adjourn in June.

Q: Yung mga 50,000 na mag-benefit, yung mga crimes non ay petty crimes?

SFMD: Yes, that's correct. Ito yung mga mahihirap nating kababayan. Ang sabi nga ni Justice Roberto Abad, in case of qualified theft, meaning yung mga kasambahay ma nasampahan ng qualified 30 theft, 30 years ang kulong.

Q: Yung usapin the Cha-Cha?

SFMD: Well, we have already started the first hearing. We will have one more hearing here (Manila), one in Baguio, in Cebu and Cagayan de Oro. I must express my disappointment at the interest of the public. When we had our first hearing, we had a good number of invitees, but the responses were lukewarm, I must say. We wanted to have more resource persons present but none appeared, so we will try again. We will have a second hearing in Manila to invite those who were not able to come.

Q: Ano po yung reaction ninyo sa sinabi ni Senator Gordon sa CNN na kailanga ng kumalas ng LP sa majority because they are always voting as a block?

SFMD: Is it against the democratic rule that we vote as a block? That is practice in this legislative body and we are exercising our prerogatives as members of the body.

Q: So LP will stay with the majority?

SFMD: Unless the majority decides otherwise.

Q: Sir, according to Senator JV, nag-apologized daw siya sa inyo?

SFMD: Siya ang nagsabi niyan, ha? Tama po iyan, Senator JV texted me apologizing for his remarks. Humingi po ng paumanhin. Ayaw ko pong sabihin iyan, pero dahilan siya naman ang nagsabi sa inyo, so I confirm.

Q: Sir, yung Blue Ribbon, motu proprio will investigate yung BI?

SFMD: What my interest here is to reorganize, to look at the possibility, to look at the structure, and see how we can institute reforms, so that incident that was reported on the bribery could be avoided. It's the structural reform that I was looking at. If they want to conduct an investigation on the alleged bribery, that's another matter and that falls under the jurisdiction of the Blue Ribbon. He is completely free to do that.

Q: Si Senator Trillanes pwede ring mag-conduct ng hearing?

SFMD: The committee of Senator Trillanes can also conduct a hearing. As I have said, the original intent of the resolution that we have filed is to conduct an investigation in aid of legislation to see whether structural reforms can be had in the Bureau of Immigration.

Q: Yung argument kahapon, is that necessary?

SFMD: I leave that to my colleagues, they're old enough to know what is necessary and what is not. I will not pass judgment on that.

Q: As Senate President, dapat ba may naging action doon si SP Koko?

SFMD: I don't see any further action. Senator Zubiri asked for the deletion of the offensive remarks and that was agreed upon, that was voted upon, no dissent, and the Senate President is authorized to delete the offensive remarks, and that is the end of it.

Q: Sir, will you still insist na sa committee pa rin ni Senator Trillanes?

SFMD: That is already a matter that the body has decided. I think, if I recall, the principal committee is the committee on civil service and the secondary committee is the committee on justice.

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