Press Release
April 24, 2021

Drilon to introduce resolution to censure Parlade over 'stupid' remarks on senators

Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon on Saturday said he will introduce a resolution to censure Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr., the controversial and foul-mouthed spokesman of National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), for calling some senators "stupid" for proposing to realign the P19-billion anti-insurgency funds to most urgent COVID-19 pandemic response.

"Ngayon lang ako nakarinig ng isang opisyal ng armed forces na sinasabing istupido ang mga senador. That is very disrespectful at uncalled for," Drilon said in an interview with radio DWIZ on Saturday.

Drilon added that Parlade's "stupid" remark has no place in healthy debates.

In a television interview on last April 22, Lt. Gen. Parlade made disrespectful, derogatory and demeaning remarks against the members of the Senate for pushing to defund NTF-ELCAC amid a series of serious, if not dangerous and deadly, red-tagging of community pantry organizers by its officials including Lt. Gen. Parlade, Drilon said.

In the interview, Lt. Gen. Parlade was quoted to have said: "'ll tell you, sila ang stupid kung ito ay binabawi nila. "Pinirmahan nila 'yung batas na 'yan para maging serbisyo, ipagpatuloy ang programa ng gobyerno. Ngayon sasabihin nila na ide-defund nila 'yung NTF-ELCAC."

"Such a display of arrogance beneath contempt should be censured," Drilon added in a statement.

"Sa aking tingin, talagang dapat ipakita ng senado ang kanilang displeasure. It is a behavior that we can censure," he said in the interview.

Drilon said that differences on several issues between the Senate and the executive cannot be avoided but one should not go down to the level such as calling the duly-elected representatives of the people "stupid."

The minority leader defended the call made by senators, including himself, to realign the P19 billion anti-insurgency to much-needed social amelioration program or ayuda.

"We are not stupid for calling for a realignment of their fund. We are not stupid for proposing to defund NTF-ELCAC because it is within the power of Congress to allocated funds," Drilon said.

"Lt. Gen. Parlade's arrogance showed his lack of respect to senators and the institution of the Senate. The Senate should censure him. Hindi dapat palampasin ito. Otherwise, masasanay at hindi na rerespetuhin ang senado, he added.

Last March 10, the Senate adopted the recommendation of the Senate Committee on Defense to remove Parlade as spokesman of the NTF-ELCAC, as his appointment violates the Constitution.

Article 16, Section 5 of the 1987 Constitution states that "No member of the armed forces in the active service shall, at any time, be appointed or designated in any capacity to a civilian position in the government, including government-owned or controlled corporations or any of their subsidiaries."

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