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Pangilinan welcomes Makabayan bloc’s defection from Duterte team

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Senator Kiko Pangilinan sees the Makabayan bloc as a potent, vigilant, and “credible fiscalizer” against the imperfections and excesses of the Duterte administration.

Pangilinan, Liberal Party president, welcomes the decision of the seven Makabayan bloc of partylist lawmakers in leaving the majority coalition.

“The assumption by the Makabayan bloc of an independent role at the House of Representatives assures that the democratic processes in the chamber would be preserved,” he said.

The members of the Makabayan bloc who bolted the majority coalition in the House of Representatives (HoR) are: ACT Teachers Rep. Antoniio Tinio, ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro, Gabriela Rep. Emmi de Jesus, Gabriela Rep. Arlene Brosas, Anakpawis Rep. Ariel Casilao, and Kabataan Rep. Sarah Elago.

”When we joined the majority in the Senate in July 2016, we had hoped of working in unity with the administration, but several events that unfolded in the past months,” Pangilinan said.

He was referring to the Marcos burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, the rise in the victims of extrajudicial killings (EJKs), the “trumped-up charges” and detention of Sen. Leila de Lima.

The senator said these events “have made it untenable and unacceptable for us to continue our ties with the majority coalition.” Four LP senators joined the minority group in February 2017 during a revamp in the Senate committee chairmanships.