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Dick foiled: Ping wants Rules Committee to review Gordon’s Dengvaxia report before floor debate

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The Senate Blue Ribbon committee’s report on the Dengvaxia scandal will have to undergo closer scrutiny before it is discussed on the Senate floor.

Sen. Panfilo Lacson moved to have Committee Report 368 referred to the Committee on Rules, after asking if the report had gained the needed number of signatures.

“Mr. President, in view of the said provision, may this representation be informed whether the required majority was obtained for us to consider Committee Report No. 368?” he said.

Committee Report 368 was filed by the Blue Ribbon Committee chaired by Richard Gordon, along with the health and finance committees, last April 30.

On its face, 14 out of the 22 members of the three committees signed the report – but some members of the three committees signed the report with concurring and dissenting votes.

Also, Lacson said some senators signed with reservations, while Senators Franklin Drilon and Leila de Lima, joined by their colleagues in the minority, filed their separate dissenting opinions.

Others, including Lacson, did not sign.

“First, may I inquire on the number of signatures needed in support of the committee report for it to be filed with the Bills and Index Division and considered for floor deliberation? Are those signing with concurring and dissenting opinions counted in determining the majority? How about those signing with reservations?” Lacson asked.

He said the second issue involves cases where several committees are conducting inquiry in aid of legislation involving certain issues, assuming that the primary committee prepares the report.

“Is the majority requirement for purposes of filing and consideration by the Senate on a per committee-basis or all the members of the different committees lumped together?” he asked.

Lacson pointed out that under Section 22 of the Rules of Procedure Governing Inquiries in Aid of Legislation adopted by the Senate in 2010, the report “shall be approved by a majority vote of all its members.”

“Concurring and dissenting reports may likewise be made by the members who do not sign the majority report within 72 hours from the approval of the report. The number of members who sign reports concurring in the conclusions of the Committee Report shall be taken into account in determining whether the report has been approved by a majority of the members: Provided… that the vote of a member who submits both a concurring and dissenting opinion shall not be considered as part of the majority unless he expressly indicates his vote for the majority decision,” Lacson noted.

Because of these issues, he moved that Committee Report No. 368 be referred in the meantime to the Committee on Rules “for discussion and resolution.”