Detained Sens. Juan Ponce Enrile, Bong Revilla and Jinggoy Estrada are not a loss to the resumption of the 16th Congress, according to Sen. Chiz Escudero.
Although, now that Pres. Noynoy Aquino gives his 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) without the three, Escudero said the atmosphere in Batasan Pambansa building will definitely change because the 3 senators are absent.
But as to the Senate function, Escudero clarified that as long as there’s quorum, they will move on especially in conducting hearings, budget deliberations, and treaty ratifications.
“Napunuan naman siya ng dalawang minority members na nag-attend, particular si Senator Nancy Binay at Senator Ejercito na siyang author at may akda ng resolusyon,” he said, adding that respective committees of the jailed solons will be taken care of other senators.
“Well dagdag trabaho in the sense na kung kanino man maa-assign yung mga komite nila, yung vice chairman o senator-designate na babalikat ng mga komiteng hinahawakan, particular ni Senator Revilla at Senator Estrada dahil wala namang komite Senator Enrile. Magiging mabigat yon sa parte ng mga senador na maa-assign nyan dahil bawat isa sa amin ay mayron ng komite sa ngayon,” Escudero went on.
Provided that there’s now only 4 members of the minority versus 16 in the majority, the solon said they are not afraid of lack of balance. The minority need not also feel pressure to step. .
“Sa Kongreso noon, humigi’t kumulang 260 ang majority members, kami noon nong minority leader ako,16 lamang kami, wala naman sa numero yon, sa nagdadala at nasa boses na dinadala ng kumakatawan sa minoriya o oposisyon sa Kamara man o sa Senado,” he said.
After DAP and PDAF, Escudero said they will focus in the passage of budget on time for the year 2015 and 2016.
Escudero was among the 20 senators who received funds from DAP in 2012 and 2013. He has the 2nd biggest take with P99M next to Sen. Franklin Drilon with P100M. Manny Aun