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Zubiri on VFA issue: We must assert our right as a co-equal branch of government

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There will come a time when legislators need to cross partylines and vote on certain national issues according to their conscience.

Senate Majority Leader Migz Zubiri stressed this on Monday as he voted in favor of Senate Resolution No. 337 which he co-authored together with four other fellow senators.

Voting 12-0-8, the senators passed SRN 337 asking the Supreme Court to rule on whether or not the concurrence of the Senate is necessary in the abrogation of a treaty previously concurred in by the Senate.

Members from both the majority and minority blocs approved SRN 337. But the seven senators who abstained were close allies of President Duterte.

“I hope walang samaan ng loob pagkaganito. This is a conscience vote. Party lines may be different when we discuss the budget,” Zubiri said.

“I’ve been In the Senate for over six years, and Congress since 1998 there are certain bills, actions, issues that need a conscience vote,” Zubiri said in explaining his vote.

“On these issues you want to be a statesman, you want to protect the institution you represent,” he stressed.

Zubiri added, “And, particularly I’m proud to be a Senator. I was also proud to be a member of the House of Representatives.”

“And, there are issues that we need to protect these institutions; to assert our right as a co-equal branch of government. And, where we could stand above the fray, ika nga,” he said.

“This is what separates us from local politics. We are voted by 20 million Filipinos,” the senator from Bukidnon said.

“And those who voted for us are from both sides of the camp, opposition or administration, they vote for us,” he said.

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