REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

Sena"te
Pasay City

Journal
SESSION NO. 48
Tuesday, January 31,2012

FIFTEENTH CONGRESS
SECOND REGULAR SESSION

SESSION NO. 48 Tuesday, January 31, 2012

CALL TO ORDER
At 9:22 a.m., the Senate President Pro Tempore, Hon. Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada, called the session to order.

Senator Cayetano (A) was on official mission. Senator Defensor Santiago was on sick leave. Senator Osmefia was absent.

PRAYER
The Body observed a minute of silent prayer.

DEFERMENT OF THE APPROVAL OF THE JOURNAL
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body deferred the consideration and approval of the Journal of Session No. 47 (January 30, 2012) to a later hour.

ROLL CALL
Upon direction of the Chair, the Secretary of the Senate, Atty. Emma Lirio-Reyes, called the roll, to which the following senators responded: Angara, E. J. Arroyo, J. P. Cayetano, P. S. Ejercito Estrada, J. Emile, J. P. Escudero, F. J. G. Guingona III, T. L. Honasan, G. B. Lacson, P. M. Lapid, M. L. M. Legarda, L. Marcos Jr., F. R. Sotto III, V. C. Trillanes IV, A. F.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF THE PRESENCE OF GUESTS
At this juncture, Senator Sotto acknowledged the presence in the gallery of Mayor Marino "Boking" Morales and the municipal officials of Mabalacat, Pampanga. Senate President Pro Tempore Ejercito Estrada welcomed the guests to the Senate.

Villar, M.

With 15 senators present, the Chair declared the presence of a quorum. Senators Drilon, Pangilinan, Pimentel, Revilla and Recto arrived after the roll call.

REFERENCE OF BUSINESS
The Deputy Secretary for Legislation, Atty. Edwin B. Bellen, read the following matters and the Chair made the corresponding referrals:

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MESSAGE FROM THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Letter from the House of Representatives, informing the Senate that on 24 January 2012, the House of Representatives approved the following House bills in which it requested the concurrence of the Senate House bill No. 592, entitled

House Bill No. 4379, entitled AN ACT GRANTING THE RELIANCE BROADCASTING UNLIMITED, INC. A FRANCHISE TO CONSTRUCT, INSTALL, ESTABLISH, OPERATE AND MAINTAIN RADIO AND TELEVISION BROADCASTING STATIONS IN THE PIDLIPPINES

To the Committee on Public Services
AN ACT TO PROVIDE FOR A NATIONAL FOLIC ACID EDUCATION PROGRAM TO PREVENT BIRTH DEFECTS House Bill No. 5180, entitled AN ACT DECLARING AUGUST 9 OF EVERY YEAR AS THE NATIONAL DAY OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES IN THE PIDLIPPINES

To the Committees on Health and Demography; and Finance
House Bill No. 4153, entitled AN ACT ESTABLISIDNG THE ARCIDPELAGIC SEA LANES IN THE PHILIPPINE ARCHIPELAGIC WATERS, PRESCRIBING THE RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF FOREIGN SIDPS AND AIRCRAFT EXERCISING THE RIGHT OF ARCHIPELAGIC SEA LANES PASSAGE THROUGH THE ESTABLISHED ARCIDPELAGIC SEA LANES AND PROVIDING FOR THE ASSOCIATED PROTECTIVE MEASURES THEREIN

To the Committee on Cultural Communities
House Bill No. 5484, entitled AN ACT PROVIDING FOR A COMPREHENSIVE REGULATION OF FIREARMS, LIGHT WEAPONS AND AMMUNITION, PENALIZING VIOLA TIONS THEREOF AND REPEALING FOR THE PURPOSE PRESIDENTIAL DECREE NUMBERED EIGHTEEN HUNDRED SIXTY -SIX

To the Committee on Foreign Relations
House Bill No. 4195, entitled AN ACT EXTENDING THE COVERAGE OF THE REDUCED RETIREMENT AGE FOR UNDERGROUND MINE WORKERS TO INCLUDE MILL PLANT WORKERS AND SUPPORT SERVICES PERSONNEL SUCH AS MECHANICAL, ELECTRICAL AND TAILINGS POND PERSONNEL, AMENDING FURTHER ARTICLE 287 OF PRESIDENTIAL DECREE NO. 442, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE LABOR CODE OF THE PHILIPPINES, AS AMENDED

To the Committees on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs; and Justice and Human Rights
House Bill No. 5576, entitled AN ACT RENEWING THE FRANCIDSE GRANTED TO QUEST BROADCASTING, INC. (FORMERLY SBS RADIO NETWORK, INC.) A FRANCIDSE TO CONSTRUCT, INSTALL, ESTABLISH, OPERATE AND MAINTAIN RADIO BROADCASTING STATIONS IN THE PIDLIPPINES

To the Committee on Public Services
House Bill No. 5594, entitled AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE RETENTION AND UTILIZATION OF THE INCOME DERIVED BY THE

To the Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources Development

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NATIONAL MUSEUM, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 26 OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 8492,· OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE NATIONAL MUSEUM ACT OF 1998 To the Committee on Educatiou, Arts aud Culture House Bill No. 5600, entitled AN ACT TRANSFERRING THE LOCA TION OF THE LA UNION SECOND DISTRICT ENGINEERING OFFICE FROM NAGUILIAN, LA UNION TO AGOO, LA UNION, AMENDING FOR THIS PURPOSE REPUBLIC ACT NO. 9033

House Bill No. 5626, entitled AN ACT PROVIDING MEASURES TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF CHILDREN ABOARD MOTORCYCLES AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES To the Committees on Public Services; aud Local Government and House Bill No. 5627, entitled AN ACT PROTECTING THE RIGHTS OF INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS, PROVIDING PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS THEREOF AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES To the Committees on Justice and Human Rights; and Finance BILLS ON FmST READING Senate Bill No. 3109, entitled AN ACT TO IMPLEMENT THE COMPETITION POLICY UNDER THE CONSTITUTION, STRENGTHEN THE PROHIBITION AGAINST ABUSE OF MONOPOLY POWER OR DOMINANT POSITION, PREVENT CARTELS, COMBINATIONS IN RESTRAINT OF TRADE AND OTHER ANTICOMPETITIVE PRACTICES AND CONDUCT, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

To the Committee on Puhlic Works House Bill No. 5608, entitled AN ACT REAPPORTIONING THE PROVINCE OF PALAWAN INTO THREE (3) LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS To the Committees on Local Government; and Electoral Reforms and People's Participation House Bill No. 5622, entitled AN ACT INCREASING THE BED CAPACITY OF THE QUIRINO MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER FROM THREE HUNDRED FIFTY (350) TO FIVE HUNDRED (500) BEDS, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE REPUBLIC ACT NO. 8313, APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES To the Committees on Health and Demography; and Finance House Bill No. 5624, entitled AN ACT ESTABLISHING THE CAREER EXECUTIVE SYSTEM To the Committee on Rules

Introduced by Senator Guingona To the Committees on Trade and Commerce; Economic Affairs; and Finance Senate Bill No. 3110, entitled AN ACT TO PROVIDE FOR THE ANALYSIS OF THE INCIDENCE AND EFFECTS OF PRISON RAPE AND TO PROVIDE INFORMATION, RESOURCES, RECOMMENDATIONS, FUNDING, AND PUNISHMENT TO PROTECT INDIVIDUALS FROM PRISON RAPE Introduced by Senator Defensor Santiago

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To the Committees on Justice and Human Rights; aud Finauce Senate Bill No. 3111, entitled AN ACT STREAMLINING THE JURISDICTION OF THE SANDIGANBAY AN AND INCREASING THE NUMBER OF SANDIGANBA Y AN ASSOCIATE JUSTICES AND DIVISIONS AND, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE PRESIDENTIAL DECREE NO. 1606, AS AMENDED BY REPUBLIC ACT NO. 7975 AND REPUBLIC ACT NO. 8294, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES Introduced by Senator Guingona III To the Committee on Justice and Human Rights Senate Bill No. 3112, entitled AN ACT DECLARING DECEMBER 26 OF EVERY YEAR AS A NATIONAL SPECIAL NON-WORKING HOLIDAY, TO BE KNOWN AS "FILIPINO DAY OF GOODWILL" OR "BOXING DAY" Introduced by Senator Marcos Jr. To the Committee on Constitutional Amendments, Revision of Codes and Laws RESOLUTIONS Proposed Senate Resolution No. 688, entitled RESOLUTION DIRECTING TIffi PROPER SENATE COMMITTEE TO CONDUCT AN INQUIRY, IN AID OF LEGISLATION, ON THE PROLIFERATION OF MARINE DEAD ZONES WHICH COULD LEAD TO HUGE ECONOMIC LOSSES FOR THE COUNTRY Introduced by Senator Defensor Santiago To the Committees on Environment and Natural Resources; and Agriculture and Food Proposed Senate Resolution No. 689, entitled RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE PROPER SENATE COMMITTEE TO CONDUCT

AN INQUIRY, IN AID OF LEGISLATION, ON THE ALARMINGLY INCREASING ACCIDENTS INVOLVING TRUCKS, BUSES AND LARGE LOAD VEHICLES DUE TO FAULTY ELECTRICAL AND MECHANICAL COMPONENTS Introduced by Senator Defensor Santiago To the Committee on Public Services Proposed Senate Resolution No. 690, entitled RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE PROPER SENATE COMMITTEE TO CONDUCT AN INQUIRY, IN AID OF LEGISLATION, ON THE REPORTED RISE OF CRIMES INVOLVING SUSPECTS RIDING ON MOTORCYCLES Introduced by Senator Defensor Santiago To the Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs Proposed Senate Resolution No. 691, entitled RESOLUTION CONGRATULATING AND COMMENDING FILIPINO BOXER MILAN "EL METODICO" MELINDO FOR SUCCESSFULLY DEFENDING HIS WORLD BOXING ORGANIZATION WBO INTERCONTINENTAL FLYWEIGHT TITLE VIA TECHNICAL KNOCKOUT AGAINST MEXICAN BOXER JUAN "PANTERITA" ESQUER ON 28 JANUARY 2012 AT THE WATERFRONT CEBU CITY OF HOTEL AND CASINO IN CEBU CITY, THE PHILIPPINES Introduced by Senator Lapid To the Committee on Rules SPECIAL ORDER Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no o bj ection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No. 81 on Senate Bill No. 3060 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders.

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901

COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 81 ON SENATE BILL NO. 3060 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, Senate Bill No. 3060 (Committee Report No. 81), entitled AN ACT AMENDING ARTICLES 363 AND 364 OF ACT NO. 3815, AS AMENDED, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE REVISED PENAL CODE. Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rules of the Senate, with the permission of the Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure. SPONSORSHlP SPEECH OF SENATOR ESCUDERO At the instance of Senator Escudero, there being no objection, the explanatory notes of Senate Bill Nos. 1378 (filed by Senator Legarda), 2116 (filed by Senator Escudero) and 2213 (filed by Senator Defensor Santiago) were adopted as the sponsorship speech for Senate Bill No. 3060.

injuring one's adversary and which tend to directly cause false prosecution. The present penalties imposed by the law are not commensurate to the injury or damage caused to the victim of false prosecution and intrigue. There is therefore a need to punish with greater severity individuals who are found guilty of incriminatory machinations. This bill aims to do just that by increasing the penalty for incriminating innocent persons from arresto mayor or imprisonment of one month and one day to six months, to prision mayor, or imprisomnent for six years and one day to twelve years. This bill likewise increases the penalty for intriguing against honor from arresto menor or imprisonment of one to 30 days, to prisian correccionai, or imprisonment of six months and one day to six years. In view of the foregoing, the immediate passage of this bill is earnestly requested. Senate Bill No. 2116 By Senator Escudero This bill seeks to increase the penalty for the crime of incriminatory machination, amending for the purpose Articles 363 and 364 of the Revised Penal Code, to deter persons from committing the same due to the increased penalty. The Revised Penal Code defines incriminatory machinations as two distinct crimes, to wit: incriminating an illl10cent person and intriguing against honor. Incriminating innocent person is committed by any person who, by any act not constituting perjury, shall directly incriminate or impute to an innocent person the commission of a crime, while intriguing against honor is committed by any person who intrigues another for the principal purpose of blemishing the honor or reputation of a person. By its nature, incriminatory machinations refer to acts done for mere vexing, harassing or injuring one's adversary and which tend to directly cause false prosecution. The present penalties imposed by the law are not commensurate to the injury or damage caused to the victim of false prosecution and intrigue. There is therefore a need to punish with greater severity individuals who are found guilty of incriminatory machinations. This bill aims to do just that by increasing the penalty for incriminating innocent persons from arresto mayor or imprisonment of one month and one day to six months, to prision mayor, which means imprisonment from six years

Following are the explanatory notes:
Senate Bill No. 1378 By Senator Legarda This bill seeks to increase the penalty for the crime of incriminatory machination, amending for the purpose Articles 363 and 364 of the Revised Penal Code, to deter persons from committing the same. The Revised Penal Code defmes incriminatory machinations as two distinct crimes, to wit: incriminating an innocent person and intriguing against his or her honor. Incriminating an innocent person is committed by any person who, by any act not constituting perjury, shall directly incriminate or impute to an innocent person the commission of a crime, while intriguing against honor is committed by any person who intrigues another for the principal purpose of blemishing his or her honor or reputation.
By its nature, incriminatory machinations refer to acts done for mere vexing, harassing or

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and one day to twelve years. The bill likewise increases the penalty for intriguing against honor from arresto menor or imprisonment of one to 30 days, to prision correccional, which means imprisonment of six months and one day to six years. In view of the foregoing, immediate passage of the bill is earnestly sought. Senate Bill No. 2213 By Senalor Defensor Santiago Intriguing against honor is punished under the Article 364 of the Revised penal Code which provides: Article 364. Intriguing against honor. - The penalty of arreslo menor or fine not exceeding 200 pesos shall be imposed for any intrigue which has for its principal purpose to blemish the honor or reputation of a person. Intriguing against honor is any scheme or plot designed to hlemish the reputation of a person by means which consist of some trickery. It is akin to slander by deed, in that the offender does not avail directly of written or spoken
words, pictures or caricatures to ridicule his

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31,2012

harassing or injuring persons adversarial to each other which tend to directly cause false prosecution. He maintained that the present penalties imposed by law are not enough and commensurate to deter the commission of the acts.

COSPONSORSHIP SPEECH OF SENATOR LEGARDA
As coauthor of the measure, Senator Legarda delivered the following cosponsorship speech: Our reputation is an aspect of our lives that we continuously seek to protect, as public perception about us undeniably extends to our loved ones and our families. To extremists, a good name is regarded as more important than life itself, since the former leaves an imprint that lasts beyond the latter. Even with diligent efforts to maintain good standing and display acceptable character in our society, we still might be faced with circumstances that can inevitably place our longsafeguarded reputation to disgrace. Whether it is the simple deed of spreading intrigues against a person, or the more serious act of implicating someone in a crime that he has
not committed, incriminatory machinations

victim but of some ingenious, crafty and secret plot, producing the same effect. This crime has been committed and neglected by many people due to flimsy penalty attached to the crime. Because of the light penalty attached to the offense, it has lost the characteristic of being deterrent. The state having the right to declare what acts are criminal, within certain well-defmed limitations, has a right to specify or increase the penalty for a particular offence. Hence, the instant bill seeks to increase the penalty for the crime of Intriguing against Honor punished under article 364 of the Revised Penal Code. Additionally, Senator Escudero stated that the proposed legislation seeks to increase the penalty and fine for Article 363 on Incriminating Innocent Person and Article 364 on Intriguing against Honor of the Revised Penal Code. He said that the penalty for Article 363 would be increased from arresla mayar to prisian mayar in its minimum period while in Article 364, the penalty would be increased from arresta menar to prisian carreccianal in its minimum period which requires fine ofP200 to P50,OOO. Senator Escudero explained that incriminatory machinations refer to acts done for mere vexing,

blemish an individual's character and may eventually ruin a person's life. To discourage such vicious acts and to safeguard the dignity of every citizen, incriminatory machinations are penalized under Articles 363 (Incriminating innocent person) and 364 (Intriguing against honor) of the Revised Penal Code. However, said law provides for penalties that fail to sufficiently compensate the reSUlting damage to victims and thus prevent them from attaining full justice.
I! is in this light that I register my support for the passage of the proposed measure under Committee Report No. 81 "An Act Amending Articles 363 and 364 of Act No. 3815, Otherwise Known as the Revised Penal Code" sponsored by Senator Escudero. This proposed legislation aims to update said legal provisions by intensifying the punishment for those proven guilty of incriminating innocent persons and those found guilty of intriguing against honor. I! is my hope that with the positive action of the Senate on this measure, we will be able to ensure a society that fully respects the dignity of its citizens.

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903

SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF SENATE BILL NO, 3060
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bilL

any department or agency of the Philippine Government or of any foreign government. (b) By perfonning any act pertaining to any person in authority or public officer of the Philippine Government or of foreign government or any agency thereof, under pretense of official position, and without being lawfuJly entitled to do so.
lt is common that private individuals pretend to be police officers in perpetrating serious crimes like kidnapping or serious illegal detention to avoid resistance from their victims. Worse, many also complain of actual officials who are perfonning acts pertaining to another person in authority or officer of the government under pretense of official position even if he is not lawfully entitled to do so.

SPECIAL ORDER
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No. 83 on Senate Bill No. 2107 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders.

COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 83 ON SENATE BILL NO. 2107
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, Senate Bill No. 2107 (Committee Report No. 83), entitled

AN ACT AMENDING ARTICLE 177 OF ACT NO. 3815, AS AMENDED, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE REVISED PENAL CODE.
Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rules of the Senate, with the permission of the Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure.

Such falsities, misrepresentations andlor usurpation of authority as defined in the aforementioned Revised Penal Code provision, should be treated more seriously by providing a heavier penalty. Presently, the penalty imposed is prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods. This is equivalent to imprisonment of six months and one day to two years and four months up to four years and two months. The authors submit that the penalty imposed is not commensurate to the kind of offense committed and damage that may be incurred by the victim, especiaJly if the perpetrator is a public official. This bill seeks to amend Article 177 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by increasing the penalty provided therein to prision mayor in its minimum and medium periods. Should the offender be a public official, the penalty to be imposed shall be prision mayor in its maximum period. In the light of the foregoing considerations, passage of this bill is earnestly sought. Additionally, Senator Escudero reiterated that the bill seeks to amend Article 177 of the Revised Penal Code on the Usurpation of Authority or Official Functions by increasing the penalty thereto from prision correccional to prision mayor in its minimum and maximum periods. He also said that if the offender is a public official, the penalty shall be in its maximum period. By increasing the penalty, he pointed out, the bill seeks to increase the deterrent factor of the crime since it usually leads to the commission of other more serious crimes in the society as seen in the studies presented in the Committee.

SPONSORSHIP SPEECH OF SENATOR ESCUDERO
At the instance of Senator Escudero, there being no objection, the explanatory note of Senate Bill No. 2116 was adopted as the sponsorship speech for Senate Bill No. 2107. Senate Bill No. 2116
By Senators Ejercilo Estrada and Escudero

Article 177 of the Revised Penal Code (Act No. 3815, as amended) may be committed in two ways: (a) By knowingly and falsely representing oneself to be an officer, agent or representative of

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SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF SENATE BILL NO. 2107
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill.

Senate Bill No. 495
By Senator Ejercito Estrada

SPECIAL ORDER
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No, 88 on Senate Bill No. 3078 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders.

Quite a number of criminal cases, including those involving grave penal offenseslfelonies, have been dismissed, or the accused were unduly acquitted, due to the failure or deliberate refusal of the prosecution witnesses to appear or testify despite due notice, In order to prevent such miscarriage of justice in dangerous drugs cases, Section 91 of RA 9165, otherwise known as the "Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002," imposes heavy penalty and fme to "any member of law enforcement agencies or any other government official and employee who, after due notice, fails or refuses, intentionally or negligently, to appear as a witness for the prosecution in any proceed· ings, involving violations of this AcL," The same law likewise penalizes with imprisonment and fme, including perpetual disqualification to hold public office, the immediate supervisor of the erring prosecution witness if, despite due notice to them and to the witness concerned, the former does not exert reasonable effort to present the latter to the court As explicitly provided in the new Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Law, the sanctions imposable in said law against defiant prosecution witnesses, can be applied only in dangerous drugs-related cases. As such, said punishment cannot be imposed upon erring prosecution witnesses in other criminal cases, regardless of its gravity. We see no logic nor reason in limiting the protection from miscarriage of justice to dangerous drugs-related cases, Proper disposition of other criminal cases deserves the same concern and protection, In view of the foregOing considerations, early passage of this bill iseamestly sought Senate Bill No. 2113 By Senator Escudero The Constitution, Article II, Section 14, subparagraph 2, provides: (2) In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved, and shall enjoy the right to be heard by bimself and counsel, to be infonned ofthe nature and cause of the accusation against him, to have a speedy, impartial, and public trial, to meet the witnesses face to face, and to have compUlsory process to secure the

COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 88 ON SENATE BILL NO. 3078
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, Senate Bill No, 3078 (Committee Report No, 88), entitled AN ACT PENALIZING ANY MEMBER OF LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES, OR ANY OTHER GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL OR EMPLOYEE WHO FAILS OR REFUSES TO TESTIFY AS WITNESS IN ANY CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS, Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rules of the Senate, with the permission of the Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate, Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure,

SPONSORSHIP SPEECH OF SENATOR ESCUDERO
Senator Escudero stated that Senate Bill No. 3078, as reported out under Committee Report No, 88, was in substitution of Senate Bill Nos, 495 and 2385 (filed by Senate Pro Tempore Ejercito Estrada), and Senate Bill No. 2113 (filed by Senator Escudero), respectively, At his instance, there being no objection, the explanatory notes of the two substituted bills were adopted as the sponsorship speech for Senate Bill No, 3078,

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905 Justice and Human Rights during the 14'h Congress. In view of the foregoing, passage of this bill is earnestly sought.

attendance of witnesses and the production of evidence in his behalf However, after arraignment, trial may proceed notwithstanding the absence of the accused provided that he has been duly notified and his failure to appear is unjustifiable. This constitutional provision guarantees the attendance of witnesses in the prosecution of criminal cases. The attendance of witnesses is vital to a speedy disposition of cases. For instance, the prosecution of dangerous drugs cases is usually slow due to lack of interest of law enforcement officers to appear and testify in court. This is actually true not only in dangerous drug cases but also in all other cases. This bill seeks to address this perennial prosecution problem by penalizing by fme or imprisonment or both, any public employee who fails or refuses, intentionally or negligently, to appear as a witness for the prosecution or defense in any criminal proceeding. This bill also punishes the head of office or agency for failure to exert reasonable effort to present his subordinate. Senate Bill No. 2385 By Senator Ejercito Estrada A number of criminal cases, including dangerous drugs cases, have been dismissed due to the failure or deliberate refusal of the prosecution witnesses to appear or testify despite due notice. The attendance and participation in court proceedings of witnesses is critical in the speedy disposition of cases. This bill seeks to address this perennial prosecution problem by penalizing by fme or imprisonment or both, any public official or employee who fails or refuses, deliberately or negligently, to appear as a witness for the prosecution or defense in any criminal proceeding. Any member who fails or refuses shall be penalized with imprisonment of not less than twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years and a fme of not less !han P500,OOO,OO with perpetual disqualification to hold public office. This bill also penalizes the immediate supervisor of the erring witness with imprisonment of not less than two (2) months and one (I) day but not more than six (6) years and a fme of not less than PIO,OOO.OO but not more than P50,OOO.OO, He shall have perpetual absolute disqualification to hold office if, despite due notice, he did not exert reasonable effort to present the witness in court or fails to institute appropriate administrative action against his subordinate. This measure is a consolidated! substituted bill drafted by the Conunittee on

SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF SENATE BILL NO. 3078
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill.

ADDITIONAL REFERENCE OF BUSINESS
The Deputy Secretary for Legislation read the following committee reports which the Chair assigned to the Calendar for Ordinary Business: Committee Report No. 98, prepared and submitted by the Committee on Justice and Human Rights, on Senate Bill No. 3113, with Senators Trillanes IV and Escudero as authors thereof, entitled AN ACT FURTHER AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF MUNICIPAL CIVIL REGISTRAR OR THE CONSULGENERAL TO CORRECT CLERICAL OR TYPOGRAPIDCAL ERRORS IN THE DAY AND MONTH IN THE DATE OF BIRTH OR SEX OF A PERSON APPEARING IN THE CIVIL REGISTER WITHOUT NEED OF A JUDICIAL ORDER, AMENDING FOR TIDS PURPOSE REPUBLIC ACT NUMBERED NINETY FORTY-EIGHT, recommending its approval in substitution of Senate Bill No. 247. Sponsor: Senator Escudero Committee Report No. 99, submitted jointly by the Committees on Justice and Human Rights; and Finance, on House Bill No. 4488, introduced by Representative Fernandez, et aI, entitled AN ACT CREATING TWO (2) ADDITIONAL REGIONAL TRIAL COURT BRANCHES IN THE PROVINCE OF LAGUNA TO BE STATIONED AT STA. ROSA CITY, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (E) OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "THE

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JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980," AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR, recommending its approval without amendment. Sponsor: Senator Escudero Committee Report No. 100, submitted jointly by the Committees on Justice and Human Rights; and Finance, on House Bill No. 4471, introduced by Representative Tiangco, et ai, entitled AN ACT CREATING THREE (3) ADDITIONAL BRANCHES OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT AND TWO (2) ADDITIONAL BRANCHES OF THE METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURT TO BE STATIONED AT THE CITY OF NAVOTAS, METRO MANILA, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (D) AND SECTION 27 OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "THE JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980," AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR,

SPECIAL ORDER Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No. 99 on House Bill No. 4488 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders. COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 99 ON HOUSE BILL NO. 4488 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there heing no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, House Bill No. 4488 (Committee Report No. 99), entitled AN ACT CREATING TWO (2) ADDITIONAL REGIONAL TRIAL COURT BRANCHES IN THE PROVINCE OF LAGUNA TO BE STATIONED AT STA. ROSA CITY, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (E) OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "THE JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980," AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR. Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rules of the Senate, with the permission of the Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure. SPONSORSHIP REMARKS OF SENATOR ESCUDERO Senator Escudero stated that House Bill No. 4488 seeks to create two additional branches of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in the Province of Laguna to be stationed in Sta. Rosa City. SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF HOUSE BILL NO. 4488 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill.

recommending its approval without amendment. Sponsor: Senator Escudero Committee Report No. 101, submitted jointly by the Committees on Justice and Human Rights; and Finance, on House Bill No. 4472, introduced by Representative Madrona, et ai, entitled AN ACT CREATING AN ADDITIONAL BRANCH OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT TO BE STATIONED A T THE MUNICIPALITY OF CAJlDIOCAN, ISLAND OF smUYAN, PROVINCE OF ROMBLON, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (E) OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "THE JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980," AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR, recommending its approval without amendment. Sponsor: Senator Escudero

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SPECIAL ORDER Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No. 100 on House Bill No. 4471 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders. COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 100 ON HOUSE BILL NO. 4471 Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, House Bill No. 4471 (Committee Report No. 100), entitled AN ACT CREATING THREE (3) ADDITIONAL BRANCHES OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT AND TWO (2) ADDITIONAL BRANCHES OF THE METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURT TO BE STATIONED AT THE CITY OF NAVOTAS, METRO MANILA, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (D) AND SECTION 27 OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "THE JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980," AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR. Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rules of the Senate, with the permission ofthe Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure. SPONSORSHIP REMARKS OF SENATOR ESCUDERO Senator Escudero stated that House Bill No. 4471 seeks to create two additional MeTC and RTC branches in the City of Navotas considering that only one MeTC has been organized therein which has an average case load of 1,327. He said that without an RTC, cases in Navotas are brought to the RTCs of Malabon and Valenzuela City which have five RTCs each.

Senator Escudero said that by virtue of the bill, two MeTC and three RTC branches would be created in the City of Navotas to lessen the current case loads in Malabon City and Valenzuela City which stand at 3,954 and 4,304, respectively. SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF HOUSE BILL NO. 4471 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill. SPECIAL ORDER Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body approved the transfer of Committee Report No. 101 on House Bill No. 4472 from the Calendar for Ordinary Business to the Calendar for Special Orders. COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 101 ON HOUSE BILL NO. 4472 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body considered, on Second Reading, House Bill No. 4472 (Committee Report No. 101), entitled AN ACT CREATING AN ADDITIONAL BRANCH OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT TO BE STATIONED AT THE MUNICIPALITY OF CAJIDIOCAN, ISLAND OF SIBUYAN, PROVINCE OF ROMBLON, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTION 14, PARAGRAPH (E) OF BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS 'THE JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980', AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR. Pursuant to Section 67, Rule XXIII of the Rnles of the Senate, with the permission of the Body, upon motion of Senator Sotto, only the title of the bill was read without prejudice to the insertion of its full text into the Record of the Senate. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Escudero, Sponsor of the measure.

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SPONSORSHIP REMARKS OF SENATOR ESCUDERO Senator Escudero stated that House Bill No. 4472 seeks to create one RTC branch in the Municipality of Cajidiocan in the Province of Romblon. Senator Escudero averred that the creation of the said court was urgently requested and needed by the local govermnent unit in view of the considerable distance from the town's capital where the RTC is located. He disclosed that per records, approximately P6.! million is needed to create one additional branch by way of MOOE and personnel salaries. He expressed hope that the Senate would act with dispatch as far as the creation of the said branch is concerned. SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF HOUSE BILL NO. 4472 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill. COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 93 ON HOUSE BILL NO. 4736 (Continuation) Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body resumed consideration, on Second Reading, of House Bill No. 4736 (Committee Report No. 93), entitled AN ACT CONVERTING THE MUNICIPALITY OF MABALACAT IN THE PROVINCE OF PAMPANGA INTO A COMPONENT CITY TO BE KNOWN AS MABALACAT CITY. Senator Sotto stated that the parliamentary status was the period of interpellations. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Marcos, Sponsor of the measure. TERMINATION OF THE PERIOD OF INTERPELLATIONS There being no interpellation, upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body closed the period of interpellations and proceeded to the period of committee amendments.

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012

COMMITTEE AMENDMENTS As proposed by Senator Marcos, there being no objection, the following committee amendments were approved by the Body, one after the other:
1.

On page 1, line 7, after the word "City," delete the phrase "which shall comprise the present territory of the Municipality of
Mabalacat, Province of Pampanga";

2.

On the same page, line 10, after the word "Pamp"nga," insert a period (.) and delete the words "as follows" and the colon (:). thereafter; On page 2, delete terminal description starting with line 2, page I up to line 21, page 12; On page 12, line 25, after the word "nnits" and the colon (:), delete the proviso "Provided, the territorial jurisdiction of the disputed area or areas shall remain with the local government unit which has existing
administrative supervision over said area or areas until the fmal resolution of the case";

3.

4.

5. 6.

On page 13, line 16, after the word "taxes," insert the phrase FEES AND CHARGES; On page 14, lines 22 and 23, after the word "treasurer," delete the phrase "and an assistant city treasurer"; On the same page, line 23, after the word "assessor," delete the phrase "and an assistant city assessor"; Delete the phrase "a city environment and natural" on line 27, page 14 up to line 2 of page 15; On page 15, line 3, after the word "appoint," delete the phrase "a city building official" and in lieu thereof, insert the following: A CITY ARCIDTECT, A CITY POPULATION OFFICER, A CITY ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES OFFICER, A CITY INFORMATION OFFICER, A CITY COOPERATIVES OFFICER, AND A CITY AGRICULTURIST.

7.

8.

9.

10. On the same page, line 9, delete the phrase "The Mabalacat City" and in lieu thereof, insert the phrase SANGGUNIANG PANLUNGSOD; II. On the same page, line 22, insert the following as subparagraph (f):
(I) ELECTIVE AND APPOINTIVE CITY

OFFICIALS SHALL RECEIVE SUCH

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909 21. On the same page, line 13, insert the phrase INDIGENOUS CULTURAL COMMUNITIES

COMPENSATION, ALLOWANCES AND OTHER EMOLUMENTS AS MAYBE DETERMINED BY LAW OR ORDINANCE, SUBJECT TO THE BUDGETARY LIMITATIONS ON PERSONAL SERVICES PRESCRIBED UNDER TITLE FIVE, BOOK II OF THE 1991 LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE, AS AMENDED: PROVIDED, THAT, NO INCREASE IN COMPENSATION OF THE MAYOR, VICE MAYOR AND SANGGUNIANG PANLUNGSOD MEMBER SHALL TAKE EFFECT UNTIL AFTER THE EXPIRATION OF THE FULL TERM OF THE SAID LOCAL OFFICIALS APPROVING SUCH INCREASE." 12. On the same page, line 26, between the conona (,) and the word "at," insert the phrase HE IS A CITIZEN OF THE PHILIPPINES; 13. On page 16, line 1, after the word "therein," insert the phrase ABLE TO READ AND WRITE FILIPINO OR ANY OTHER LOCAL LANGUAGE OR DIALECT; 14. On the same page, line 2, between the comma (,) and the conjunction "and," insert the phrase BUT SHALL SERVE FOR NOT MORE THAN THREE (3) CONSECUTIVE TERMS IN THE SAME POSITION; 15. On page 17, line 3, after the word "employees," insert the phrase WHOSE SALARIES AND WAGES; 16. On the same page, line 15, after the article

after the word "poor";

22. On page 27, line 20, insert the following
subsection;

(Xl) SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF BOOK II OF THE 1991 LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE, AS AMENDED, GRANT EXCLUSIVEPRIVllEGES INCONSTRUCTING FISH CORALS OR FISH PENS OR THE TAKING OR CATCHING OF BANGUS FRY, PRAWN FRY OR KAWAG-KAWAG, OR FRY OF ANY SPECIES OR FISH WITHIN THE CITY WATERS;
23. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 24. On page 30, line 21, after the word "greenbelts," insert a comma (,) and the phrase; MANGROVES AND OTHER SIMILAR FOREST DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS; 25. On page 41, line 9, insert the following as subsection (b): (b) IF A PERMANENT VACANCY OCCURS IN THE OFFICE OF THE PUNONG BARANGAY, THE HIGHEST RANKING SANGGUNL\NGBARANGAYMEMBER OR IN THE CASE OF HIS PERMANENT INABILITY, THE SECOND HIGHEST RANKING SANGGUNlANG MEMBER SHALL BECOME THE PUNONG BARANGAY; 26. Reletter the accordingly; succeeding subsections

"the," change the word "office" to CITY HALL;
17. On page 18, lines 1 and 2, after the word

27. On page 46, delete lines 8 to 25;
. 28. On page 48, line 6, delete the article "and" and insert the following subsection;

"issued," delete the phrase "to the Office of
the President and the Office of the Secretary of the DILG," and in lieu thereof, insert the phrase BY HIM TO THE PROVINCIAL

(11) ATIEND PERSONALLY OR THROUGH
AN AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE ALL SESSIONS OF THE LOCAL BOARD OF ASSESSMENTS; 29. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 30. On the same page, delete lines 10 to 23; 31. On page 56, line 17, insert a comma (,) and the word LAW after the word "administra-

GOVERNOR;
18. On the same page, line 6, between the words "inhabitants" and "of," insert the phrases frWORMTHECOMPONENTBARANGAY OFFICIALS AND INHABITANTS; 19. On page 23, line 7, insert the word and figure THREE (3) between the words "the" and

"sectoral";
20. On the same page, line 9, delete the phrase "In addition thereto, there shall be three (3) sectoral representatives" and in lieu thereof, insert the phrase WHICH SHALL COME FROM THE FOLLOWING SECTORS;

tion";
32. On page 57, between lines 5 and 6, insert the following subsections: (2) ASSIST IN THE COORDINATION OF

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THE WORK OF ALL THE OFFICIALS OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT, UNDER THE SUPERVISION, DIRECTION AND CONTROL OF THE CITY MAYOR, AND FOR THIS PURPOSE, HE MAY CONVENE THE CHIEFS OF OFFICES AND OTHER OFFICIALS OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT;

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012

(5) RENDER HiS OPINION IN WRITING ON ANY QUESTIONS OF LAW WHEN REQUESTED TO DO SO BY THE CITY MAYOR OR SANGGUNIAN; (6) INVESTIGATE OR CAUSE TO BE INVESTIGATED ANY LOCAL OFFICIAL OR EMPLOYEE FOR ADMINISTRATIVE NEGLECT OR MISCONDUCT IN OFFICE, AND RECOMMEND APPROPRIATE ACTION TO THE CITY MAYOR OR SANGGUNIAN, AS THE CASE MAYBE; (7) INVESTIGATE OR CAUSE TO BE INVESTIGATED ANY PERSON, FIRM OR CORPORATION HOLDING ANY FRANCHISE OR EXERCISING ANY PUBLIC PRIVILEGE FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH ANY TERM OR CONDITION IN THE GRANT OF SUCH FRANCHISE OR PRIVILEGE, AND RECOMMENDING APPROPRIATE ACTION TO THE CITY MAYOR OR SANGGUNIAN, AS THE CASE MAY BE;

(3) ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN A
SOUND PERSONNEL PROGRAM FOR THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT TO PROMOTE CAREER DEVELOPMENT AND UPHOLD THE MERIT PRINCIPLE IN THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT SERVICE; (4) CONDUCT A CONTINUING ORGANIZA TIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT WITH THE END IN VIEW OF INSTITUTING EFFECTIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REFORMS; 33. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly, 34. On the same page, line 19, after the period (.l, insert the following paragraph: THE TERM OF THE LEGAL OFFICER SHALL BE COTERMINOUS WITH THAT OF HIS APPOINTING AUTHORITY;

35. On page 58, line 6,insert the following subsections,to wit:
(3) REPRESENTTIlELOCALGOVERNMENT UNIT IN ALL CIVIL ACTIONS AND SPECIAL PROCEEDINGS WHEREIN TIlE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT OR ANY OFFICIAL THEREOF, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY, IS A PARTY: PROVIDED, THAT, IN ACTIONS OR PROCEEDINGS WHERE A COMPONENT CITY OR MUNICIPALITY IS A PARTY ADVERSE TO THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT OR TO ANOTIlER COMPONENT CITY, A SPECIAL LEGAL OFFICER MAYBE EMPLOYED TO REPRESENT THE ADVERSE PARTY; (4) WHEN REQUIRED BY THE MAYOR OR SANGGUNIAN PANLUNGSOD, DRAFT ORDINANCES, CONTRACTS, BONDS, LEASES AND OTHER INSTRUMENTS, INVOLVING ANY INTEREST OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT; AND PROVIDE COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ON ANY INSTRUMENTS ALREADY DRAWN;

(8) WHEN DIRECTED BY THE CITY MAYOR, OR SANGGUNIAN, INITIATE AND PROSECUTE IN THE INTEREST OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT CONCERNED ANY CIVIL ACTION ON ANY BOND, LEASE OR OTHER CONTRACT UPON ANY BREACH OR VIOLATION THEREOF;
(9) REVIEW AND SUBMIT RECOMMENDATIONS ON ORDINANCES APPROVED AND EXECUTIVE ORDERS ISSUED BY COMPONENT UNITS;

36. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 37. On page 59, line 7, insert the following

subsections, to wit:
(3) IDENTIFY THE BASIC NEEDS OF THE NEEDY, THE DISADVANTAGED AND THE IMPOVERISHED AND DEVELOP AND IMPLEMENT APPROPRIATE MEASURES TO ALLEVIATE THEIR PROBLEMS AND IMPROVE THEIR LIVING CONDITIONS;
(4) PROVIDE RELIEF AND APPROPRIATE CRISIS INTERVENTION FOR VICTIMS OF ABUSE AND EXPLOITATION AND RECOMMEND APPROPRIATE MEASURES TO DETER FURTHER ABUSE AND EXPLOITATIONS;

(5) ASSIST THE MAYOR, AS THE CASE
MAYBE, IN IMPLEMENTING THE

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012

911

BARANGAYLEVEL PROGRAM FOR THE TOTAL DEVELOPMENT AND PROTECTION OF CHILDREN UP TO SIX (6) YEARS OF AGE; (6) FACILITATE THE IMPLEMENTATION OF WELFARE PROGRAMS FOR THE DISABLED, ELDERLY AND VICTIMS OF DRUG ADDICTION, THE REHABILITATION OF PRISONERS AND PAROLEES, THE PREVENTION OF JUVENILE DELINQUENCY AND SUCH OTHER ACTIVITIES WHICH WOULD ELIMINATE AND MINIMIZE THE ILLEFFECTS OF POVERTY;
(7) INITIATE AND SUPPORT YOUTH WELFARE PROGRAMS THAT WILL ENHANCE THE ROLE OF THE YOUTH

41. On the same page, line 26, change the word and figure "three (3)" to FIVE (5);
42. On page 61, line 16, insert the following subsections: (4) WITH THE APPROVAL OF THE CITY MAYOR, AS THE CASE MAYBE, ASSIGN BUILDING OR LAND SPACE TO LOCAL OFFICIALS OR OTHER PUBLIC OFFICIALS, WHO BY LAW ARE ENTITLED TO SUCH SPACE; (5) RECOMMEND TO THE CITY MAYOR, AS THE CASE MAY BE, THE REASONABLE RENTAL RATES FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT PROPERTIES, WHETHER REAL OR PERSONAL, WHICH WILL BE LEASED TO PUBLIC ORPRIVATE ENTITIES BY THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT; (6) MAINTAIN AND SUPERVISE JANITORIAL, SECURITY, LANDSCAPING AND OTHER RELATED SERVICES IN ALL LOCAL GOVERNMENT PUBLIC BUILDINGS AND OTHER REAL PROPERTY, WHETHER OWNED OR LEASED BY THE LOCAL GOVERNMENTUNIT;

IN NATION-BUILDING;
(8) COORDINATE WITH GOVERNMENT AGENCIESANDNON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS WHICH HAVE FOR THEIR PURPOSE THE PROMOTION AND THE PROTECTION OF ALL NEEDY, DISADVANTAGED, UNDERPRIVILEGED OR IMPOVERISHED GROUPS OR INDIVIDUALS, PARTICULARLY THOSE IDENTIFIED TO BE VULNERABLE AND HIGH RISK TO EXPLOITATION,ABUSEANDNEGLECT;

38. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 39. On page 60, line 7, insert the following subsections: (3) ADVISE THE CITY MAYOR AS THE CASE MAY BE, ON ALL MATTERS PERTAINING TO THE SLAUGHTER OF ANIMALS FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION AND THE REGULATION OF SLAUGHTER HOUSES; (4) REGULATE THE KEEPING OF DOMESTIC ANIMALS; (5) REGULATE AND INSPECT POULTRY, MILK AND DAIRY PRODUCTS FOR PUBLIC CONSUMPTION; (6) ENFORCE ALL LAWS FOR THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS;

(7) COLLATE AND DISSEMINATE INFORMATION REGARDING PRICES, SHIPPING AND OTHER COSTS OR SUPPLIES AND OTHER ITEMS COMMONLY USED BY THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT;
(8) PERFORM ARCHlYAL AND RECORD MANAGEMENT WITH RESPECT TO THE RECORDS OF OFFICES AND DEPARTMENTS OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT; (9) PERFORM ALL OTHER FUNCTIONS PERTAINING TO SUPPLY AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT HERETOFORE PERFORMED BY THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT TREASURER AND ENFORCE POLICIES ON RECORDS CREATION, MAINTENANCE AND DISPOSAL; 43. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 44. On page 62, line 24, insert the following subsections, viz: (3) ESTABLISH, MAINTAIN, PROTECT AND PRESERVE COMMUNAL FOREST, WATERSHEDS, TREE PARKS, MANGROVES, GREENBELTS AND

(7) TAKE THE NECESSARY MEASURES TO ERADICATE, PREVENT OR CURE ALL FORMS OF ANIMAL DISEASES;
40. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly;

912
SIMILAR FOREST PROJECTS AND COMMERCIAL FORESTS LIKE INDUSTRIAL TREE FARMS AND AGRO-FORESTRY PROJECTS; (4) PROVIDE EXTENSION SERVICES TO THE BENEFICIARIES OF FOREST DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS AND TECHNICAL FINANCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE ASSISTANCE; (5) MANAGE AND MAINTAIN SEED BANKS AND PRODUCE SEEDLINGS FOR FOREST AND TREE PARKS; (6) PROVIDE EXTENSION SERVICES TO BENEF1CIARIES OF FOREST DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS AND RENDER ASSISTANCE FOR NATURALRESOURCE RELATED CONSERVATION AND UTILIZATION ACTIVITIES CONSISTENT WITH ECOLOGICAL BALANCE;

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012 AS THE CASE MAYBE, THE ARCHITECTURAL PLANS AND DESIGNS SUBMITTED BY THE GOVERNMENTAL AND NONGOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES OR INDIVIDUALS, PARTICULARLY THOSE FOR UNDERDEVELOPED AND POORLY DESIGNED AREAS; (5) COORDINAT!, WITH GOVERNMENT AND NON-GOVERNMENT ENTITIES AND INDIVIDUALS INVOLVED IN THE AESTHETICS- MAXIMUM UTILIZATION OF THE LAND AND WATER WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE GOVERNMENT UNIT COMPATIBLE WITH ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY AND ECOLOGICAL BALANCE; 49. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly; 50. On page 65, line 8, insert the following subsections: (3) PROVIDE RELEVANT, ADEQUATE AND TIMELY INFORMATION TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT AND ITS RESIDENTS; (4) FURNISH INFORMATION AND DATA ON LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS TO GOVERNMENT AGENCIES OR OFF1CES AS MAY BE REQUIRED BY LAW OR ORDINANCE AND NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS TO BE FURNISHED TO SAID AGENCIES AND ORGANIZATIONS;
(5) MAINTAIN EFFECTIVE LIAISON

(7) PROMOTE THE SMALL-SCALE MINING AND UTILIZATION OF MINERAL RESOURCES, PARTICULARLY MINING OF GOLD;
(8) COORDINATE WITH GOVERNMENT AGENCIES AND NON-GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF MEASURES TO PREVENT AND CONTROL LAND, AIR AND WATER POLLUTION WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES; 46. Renumber the accordingly; succeeding sections

47. On page 63, line 14, change the word and figure "five (5)" to THREE (3); 48. On page 64, line 3, insert the following subsections: (3) PREPARE AND RECOMMEND FOR CONSIDERATION OF THE SANGGUNlAN THE ARCHITECTURAL PLAN AND DESIGN FOR THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT OR A PART THEREOF, INCLUDING THE RENEWAL OF SLUMS, BLIGHTED AREAS, LAND RECLAMATION ACTIVITIES, THE GREENING OF LAND AND APPROPRIATE PLANNING OF MARINE AND FORESHORE AREAS; (4) REVIEW AND RECOMMEND FOR APPROPRIATE ACTION OF THE SANGGUNlANGOR THE CITY MAYOR

WITHTHE VARIOUS SECTORS OF THE COMMUNITY ON MATTERS AND ISSUES THAT AFFECT THE LIVELIHOOD AND THE QUALITY OF LIFE OF THE INHABITANTS, AND ENCOURAGE SUPPORT FOR PROGRAMS OF THE LOCAL AND NATIONAL GOVERNMENT; 51. Delete the entire Section 46; and 52. Renumber the succeeding subsections accordingly.

TERMINATION OF THE PERIOD OF COMMITTEE AMENDMENTS
There being no other committee amendment, upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body closed the period of committee amendments and proceeded to the period of individual amendments.

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913

TERMINATION OF THE PERIOD OF INDIVIDUAL AMENDMENTS There being no individual amendment, upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body closed the period of individual amendments, SUSPENSION OF SESSION Upon motion of Senator Sotto, the session was suspended,
It was 10:15 a.m.

Senator Cayetano (P) said that while she was amenable to the suggestion, such an arrangement would limit the Members from making their appointments for the coming week since they would be notified about the CA hearing only the day before it is held. She said that she preferred holding legislative sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays so that the Members would have one free day for their other commitments or engagements. However, Senator Sotto pointed out that the Members would have ample time to plan their schedule since the Members are advised of the CA hearing three days ahead. Responding to further comments, Senator Sotto stated that the options were either to hold the legislative sessions on Tuesdays and Wednesdays as proposed by Senator Defensor Santiago, or to schedule the same on Tuesdays and Thursdays as suggested by Senator Cayetano (P). Considering that the CA hearings do not start on time and are not held every week, Senator Legarda suggested that the Senate continue holding legislative sessions on Wednesday mornings promptly at 9 a.m. but adjourn at 10:30 or 11 a.m. on days when CA hearings are scheduled so that senators have Thursday mornings free for their speaking engagements or activities. She added that as the caucus begins at 12 noon and the plenary is held at 1 p.m., the CA hearing could be adjourned by 2 p.m. in time for the impeachment hearing. She believed that holding legislative sessions on consecutive days is important for the Senate to maintain momentum on its legislative work. For his part, Senator Sotto believed that most of the senators agree to continue holding sessions on Wednesdays rather than Thursdays as the legislative session could be ended by II a.m. in the event of a CA hearing. SUSPENSION OF SESSION Upon motion of Senator Sotto, the session was suspended.
It was 10:29 a.m.

RESUMPTION OF SESSION At 10:21 a.m., the session was resumed. APPROVAL OF HOUSE BILL NO, 4736 ON SECOND READING Submitted to a vote, there being no objection, House Bill No. 4736 was approved on Second Reading. MANIFESTATION OF SENATOR LAPID Senator Lapid thanked Senate President Pro Tempore Ejercito Estrada, Senator Marcos and Mayor Morales for their efforts in ensuring the passage of the measure. SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF HOUSE BILL NO. 4736 Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill. MANIFESTATION OF SENATOR SOTTO Senator Sotto said that most of the senators have agreed with Senator Defensor Si\ntiago's proposal to hold legislative sessions from 9 a.m. to 12 noon on Tuesdays and Wednesdays rather than on Mondays and Tuesdays. Asked by the Chair how the proposed schedule would affect the Wednesday hearings of the Commission on Appointments (CA), Senator Sotto said that the session could be moved to Thursday morning since the Members would be advised of the CA hearing by Tuesday.

RESUMPTION OF SESSION At 10:29 a.m., the session was resumed.

914

TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012

MOTION OF SENATOR SOTTO
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body approved the proposal to hold legislative sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings but end the Wednesday session at 11 a.m. in instances when a CA hearing would be conducted on the same day. Senator Satto informed the Body that the new schedule will be implemented the following week.

To resolve the issue, Senator Sotto said that he would not put the proposal into a motion but that he would simply seek the permission of Senate President Enrile to allow the trial to be ajourned at 5 p.m.

MANIFESTATION OF SENATOR CAYETANO (P)
For her part, Senator Cayetano (P) believed that the Senate would be able to accomplish more during the trial if the prosecution is prevented from employing grandstanding tactics via its presentation of numerous witnesses as these would only be a waste of the court's time. She pointed out that this action could be covered by the best evidence rule which has the intention of being able to present testimony which has more impact. Moreover, she believed that the court could save time and complete its bnsiness for the day in only two hours. Noting that Senate President Enrile has indicated his approval of the Senator Pia Cayetano's proposal, Senator Satta expressed his intention to present the suggestion to the Prosecution and the Defense teams.

MANIFESTATION OF SENATOR SOTTO
As the long session and trial hours have been quite taxing both on the senators and the Senate staff, Senator Satta urged the Members to consider Senator Arroyo's proposal for the impeachment court to end the trial at five o'clock in the afternoon. He pointed out that compared to a regular court which normally holds hearings once a month - or even once a week if the judge is keenly interested in the case - the impeachment court holds trials four times a week. At this juncture, Senator Legarda said that not only the legislative session, but even the impeachment trial should be held on time so that it could be adjourned at exactly six o'clock in the afternoon. She said that the four hours allotted for the trial would be needed considering that suspensions are also held within the trial itself. However, Senator Satta pointed out that some of the older senators might find it difficult to work for more than three hours.

POINT OF INFORMATION OF SENATOR SOTTO
Senator Satta informed the Body ofthe Senate's accomplishments for the 15 th Congress: • Six (6) committee reports completed and three (3) bills approved on Third Reading from January 16-31,2012; 101 committee reports completed since July 2011; and 33 bills approved on Third Reading since July 2011.

REMARKS OF SENATOR ARROYO
Preliminarily, Senator Arroyo noted that the senators spend four hours every week for legislative work and 16 hours for the impeachment trial. However, he pointed out that Article III of the Constitution mandates the Senate primarily to work on legislation and policy. However, he noted that although the Senate's function as an impeachment court is but an incidental power of the Body to ensure the accountability of public officers, the Senate is consuming more time for this exercise than for its legislative responsibility. He proposed that the trial be shortened to three hours so that four hours could be allotted for the legislative sessions instead. He expressed concern over reports that the House of Representatives was planning to file an impeachment complaint against another justice considering that the responsibility for trying the case would again be passed on to the Senate.

• •

BffiTHDAY GREETINGS
At this juncture, the Chair greeted Senate Secretary Emma Lirio-Reyes on the occasion of her birthday.

COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 49 ON SENATE BILL NO. 2865 (Continuation)
Upon motion of Senator Satta, there being no objection, the Body resumed consideration, on Second Reading, of Senate Bill No. 2865 (Committee Report No. 49), entitled

.TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012

915

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR A NATIONAL POLICY ON REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT. Senator Sotto stated that the parliamentary starus was still the period of interpellations. Thereupon, the Chair recognized Senator Cayetano (P), Sponsor of the measure, and Senator Legarda for the continuation of her interpellation.
INTERPELLATION OF SENATOR LEGARDA

women with few provisions on reproductive health, the RH bill is more comprehensive as it also covers male health concerns. Senator Legarda asked whether the hiring of skilled health professionals for maternal health care and skilled birth attendants is also mandated in the Magna Carta of Women. She noted that under the RH bill, the Department of Health is mandated to assist in the hiring of midwives, caregivers, skilled health professionals for the maternal health care of women not only in urban centers but also in remote areas so that they will not rely on unskilled BHW s which may cause maternal deaths and infections for children. Senator Cayetano (P) explained that the Magna Carta of Women is a special law for women which contains simple one-liner provisions on reproductive health, one of which states that "maternal care to include pre- and post-natal services to address pregnancy and infant health nutrition"; on the other hand, the RH bill is really meant to strengthen the reproductive health policy. To the specific question, she said that Section 5 of RH bill contains a twoparagraph provision on the specific need to hire skilled health professionals. She pointed out that the RH bill tries to break down general requirements in the IRR of the Magna Carta of Women such as the provision which states that "The LGU shall provide sufficient number of skilled professionals to attend to deliveries" because it is a special law for reproductive health. On whether the RH bill requires a full-time skilled health professional for every 150 deliveries per year compared to the Magna Carta of Women and its IRR which call for general provisions, Senator Cayetano (P) answered in the affirmative. Senator Legarda manifested her support for this provision in the RH bill, which had not been specified in the Magna Carta of Women. She hoped that the provision could be highlighted as an important provision in the RH bill because divisive issues such as contraception and population control have become the focus of discussions and the source of controversies concerning the measure. However, she believed that there would be a greater understanding of the RH bill if the discussion would he based on other concerns such as the importance of safe delivery of expectant mothers in rural areas or the problem of infant/child mortality because of the lack of skilled health workers.

(Continuation)
At the outset, Senator Cayetano (P) cited important provisions of the Reproductive Health (RH) vis-a-vis the Magna Carta of Women, explaining that the Magna Carta of Women contains simple provisions concerning maternal care, like pre- and post-natal services to address pregnancy and infant health nutrition, while the RH measure was expanded, as it delegated more specific responsibilities to different sectors. She cited among the important provisions in the RH bill, such as: a) Section 5, which refers to the hiring of skilled health professionals for maternal and skilled birthing attendants, specifying the number of health professionals based on the ratio of I: 150 deliveries; b) Section 6, which requires the LGUs to ensure that they have appropriate hospitals and facilities, specifying one public and one private hospital for CEMONC and BEMONC for a population of 500,000; c) Section 8, which refers to maternal death review; She explained that it was difficult to source data on whether women die as a result of maternal health care complications like heart failure. d) Section 7, which refers to access to family planning; e) Section 9, which refers to family planning supplies as essential medicine; and,
t)

Section 10, which refers to procurement and distribution of family planning supplies.

She maintained that compared to the Magna Carta of Women, which was a special law for

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At this juncture, Senator Cayetano (P) adverted to Section 5 of the RH bill which provides that "people in the geographically isolated or highly populated and depressed areas shall not be neglected." She explained that the provision was a product of the experiences of many health advocates, NGOs, the DOH and people supporting the RH bill, who believe that while it is important to have one health professional for every 150 deliveries, it is just as essential to have a skilled birth attendant available to source the needs of women in geographically isolated areas. She affirmed that the provision also covered areas populated by indigenous people. Senator Legarda disclosed that 12 million indigenous people like the Mangyans of Mindoro and Yakans from Mindanao who are hardly seen in urban areas, are not served by the DOH. Asked how the RH bill could serve the indigent women and families who live in remote areas which could only be reached by foot, Senator Cayetano (P) stated that the RH bill will ensure the availability of the very minimum number of health workers and the most accessible positioning of the health care center. She added that a more complicated and expensive way to achieve a lower maternal death rate is for the DOH to follow the policy that every birth is considered an "at risk" birth, making it imperative for pregnant women to see a health professional, to be monitored carefully or be near to a health facility like clinic or hospital. She acknowledged that this would require a lot of planning because health care facilities would have to be strategically planned and located so that women would have access to them. Senator Legarda stated that she has met more than 100,000 barangay health workers (BHWs) all over the country, and she asked whether the RH bill would address the skills training needed by these BHWs. Senator Cayetano (P) replied in the affirmative, saying that the BHW s would have to eventually attend to other equally important health issues like caring for senior citizens. Senator Legarda expressed her intention to propose an amendment that would not only empower and provide training for BHWs but also provide them with equipment to utilize or further enhance their skills so that they could be of more service to residents in remote baranggays. Senator Cayetano (P) suggested that Senator Legarda offer proposals to strengthen Section 14, which refers to capacitybuilding of barangay health workers.

Asked why the RH bill is needed for the DOH to actually perform such a mandate, Senator Cayetano (P) explained that there are many provisions in the RH bill which are supposed to be implemented by the DOH but the DOH is being hampered to fully implement them because of limited budget. Moreover, she said that removing one or two provisions that are similar to the Magna Carta of Women would make the RH bill incomplete. She stated that the DOH has, in fact, been implementing the Maternal Neonatal and Child Health and Nutrition Program (MNCHNP), which includes improving Birthing and Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care, one of the many programs which were underfunded and undermanned. She hoped that the Body would support the RH measure and that the President would not veto any of its provisions. Further, she disclosed that DOH Secretary Ona had admitted that while some of the agency's funds would be used to hire and train more midwives, there were still other programs that need to be strengthened. She added that the DOH has been receiving a lukewarm support from the LGUs, a concern that the RH bill would address by requiring the LGUs to participate and support the reproductive health programs. Adverting to Section 9, Senator Legarda asked for the basis behind the classification of family planning supplies as essential medicines. She pointed out that the Generics Act, which institutionalized the concept of essential drugs, provides that a National Drug Formulary shall be prepared and periodically updated by the DOH on the basis of health conditions obtained in the Philippines, as well as internationallyaccepted criteria which shall consist of a core list or a complementary list. Asked whether family planning supplies will form part of the core list or contemporary list, Senator Cayetano (P) stated that the inclusion of family planning supplies as essential medicines is a practice of the WHO which, for many decades, has provided international standards that serve as guide for the country. In addition, she informed the Body that the inclusion of family planning supplies as essential medicines would allow local government authorities to purchase these items. Senator Legarda pointed out that RA 6675 defines "essential drug list" as a list of drugs prepared and periodically updated by the Department of Health on the basis of health conditions obtaining in the Philippines and it shall consist of a core list and a

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complementary list. She said that "core list" is a list of medicines that meet the health care needs of the majority of the population that must therefore be carried out by government agencies, while the "complementary list" is a list of alternative drugs that may be substituted when there is no response to the core essential drug, for instance, when there is hypersensitivity reaction to the core essential drug, or for one reason or another, the core essential drug cannot be given. She asked whether family planning supplies are included in the core list according to the WHO classification under the subgroup of contraceptives, Senator Cayetano (P) replied in the affirmative. On whether the proposed classification of family planning supplies under the bill is consistent with the WHO model list of essential medicines and in conformance with international standards as per existing guidelines given that the law requires that the formulation of such a list must be based on internationally-accepted criteria, Senator Cayetano (P) replied in the affirmative. Asked what international standards were used as basis in making such classification, Senator Cayetano (P) replied that when the DOH considers the recommendations of the WHO, the assumption is that these recommendations were based on extensive studies, and based on her own research, the WHO's essential medicines are those that satisty the priority health care needs of Filipinos. She added that medicines are selected with due regard to public health, relevance evidenced on efficacy and safety, and comparative cost effectiveness. She said that the WHO defines "essential medicines" as those that are intended to be available within the context of functioning health systems at all times in adequate amounts, in the appropriate dosage forms, with assured quality and adequate information, and at a price the individual and the community can afford. Asked which Asian countries have conformed to the WHO list of essential medicines, Senator Cayetano (P) cited, among others, China, Malaysia and Thailand. She recalled that in previous interpellations, it was discussed that almost all countries adhere to the WHO recommendation, they have national policies on reproductive health, and they have a very wide access to reproductive health supplies and medicines. She rued that the Philippines is one of the few countries which have yet to classity contraceptives and other family planning supplies as essential medicines which are recommended

by the WHO. She affirmed that in most Asian countries, family planning supplies are readily available and considered as essential medicines under the core list of the WHO. Senator Cayetano (P) stated that family planning supplies are available in the Philippines but these are not accessible to many particularly the poor. This inaccessibility, she said, shall be addressed by the bill by making supplies accessible based on that being qualified as essential medicines. Senator Legarda requested that she be provided with a matrix or report on the Asian countries that have actually listed family planning supplies as essential medicines under the core list based on official documents from the WHO that specifically define a core list and a complementary list. She said that she would like to understand the process of selecting the core and complementary list in Asian countries, regardless of religion and belief in a particular country, and at the same time complying with the WHO standards. Nevertheless, Senator Legarda stated that she knew of several Asian countries that have recently included family planning supplies in their essential drug list (EDL) and they are: • • Bangladesh which revised its EDL in 2008 by including condoms and oral contraceptives; Nepal whose EDL contains injectable, IUDs, condoms and implantable contraceptives; India which listed condoms, hormonal and copper IUDs in their EDL; • • Malaysia which included contraceptives but not condoms; and Pakistan whose EDL has a wide array of contraceptives including condoms.

She pointed out that the EDL could provide a clearer understanding of the nuances in the adoption of the WHO list in various countries. Senator Cayetano (P) posited that particular countries have their own national policies on how they approach their family planning needs. In the Philippines, she pointed out that accepting a national policy on family planning has become very difficult because of very strong opposition from religious groups. She said that the Committee has taken a more liberal approach by providing every LGU, private practitioner, individual and family a wider

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variety of contraceptives to choose from. She believed that it would be simpler for the country to have one or two contraceptives in its essential drugs list but simplicity, she rued, is not always the answer because there are very strong views on this issue. She posited that it would be best for the Filipinos to have a wider selection of family planning supplies that would suit their needs. Asked on the process for inclusion in the National Drug Fonnulary, Senator Cayetano (P) stated that the National Drug Committee shall review all the drugs and decide what medicines would be included in the EDL. She believed that it should be the policy of the government to allow individuals to make their choice. Senator Legarda observed that currently, only hormonal contraceptives are included in the National Drug Formulary but not all family planning supplies are included in the bill. Asked if all family planning supplies are already classified as essential medicines, Senator Cayetano (P) replied in the affirmative, as she clarified that among those listed in the National Drug Formulary are progestin and hormonal contraceptives. She explained that while IUDs and condoms are considered essential family planning supplies, these were not included in the National Drug Formulary because technically, they are devices and not medicines. On whether the bill seeks to include IUDs and condoms as essential family planning supplies, Senator Cayetano (P) believed that it was not necessary to make any distinction between what is considered to be a medicine or a device. She acknowledged that the bill may need to be amended to ensure that there is no confusion regarding these items that are not in the National Drug Formulary not because they are not recommended by DOH and WHO, but because they fall under a different classification based on existing technical definitions. Asked which agency reviews, recommends, deletes, purchases the list of essential medicines for the National Drug Formulary, Senator Cayetano (P) replied that it is the Food and Drug Administration. Upon further query, Senator Cayetano (P) stated that the guidelines that detennine which medicines would be included or deleted from the National Fonnulary as essential medicines are being reviewed annually.

Senator Legarda remarked that existing guidelines require that the development and updating of the National Drug Formulary strictly follow the algorithm for deletion and addition of medicines. She said that the National Drug Information Center (NOIC) would have to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the medicines before a medicine may be included in the list. She asked whether the National Drug Infonnation Center (NOIC) still exists under the newly created FDA and is still part of the DOH. Senator Cayetano (P) said that under the new law, the National Formulary Committee (NFC) regularly reviews the list of medicines. Senator Legarda noted that the NFC undertakes the review through a series of consultations and deliberation meetings with the academe, medical schools, experts from the Philippine Medical Association, specialty hospitals, private hospitals, government institutions and with inputs from pharmaceuticals and all stakeholders. Asked if these were conducted to determine whether family planning supplies indeed qualifY as essential medicines as contemplated by the Generics Act and internationally-set standards, Senator Cayetano (P) replied that the consultations arrived at a conclusion that IUDs and condoms are not technically defined as medicines. To the observation that the inclusion in the bill of the IUD or condom as an essential medicine would overtake the review process of the National Drug Fonnulary, Senator Cayetano (P) explained that Section 9 does not seek to take over the responsibilities of the National Drug Formulary; rather, it was included to establish the fact that these medicines should be part of the formulary without shortening its normal procedures. She said that while the Committee considers these supplies as essential component medicines for family planning, it does not intend to overstep the duties and functions of the National Drug Formulary. Senator Legarda believed that medical experts such as doctors, skilled health professionals, and the academe would be in a better position to detennine the importance of these supplies considering the massive health requirements of the country. She clarified that she was not saying that the lawmakers are inadequate or incompetent to decide on the matter but that experts would be in a better position to do so since they comprise the Committee that deliberates the items on the essential medicines list.

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Senator Cayetano (P) acknowledged that legislators do not have the training and expertise to make determination on medical matters, but she clarified that the intent is merely to ensure that the agencies tasked under the Constitution to provide for the family planning health care needs of the people will do their job. Moreover, she pointed out that the last sentence of Section 9 provides for the removal of any product that has been determined to be illegal and ineffective. She reiterated that the determination should be left to the experts and that she would not want members of Congress to impose their personal views on what should be considered as essential medicines. What was important, she stressed, is that reproductive health is recognized as an important component of health. Senator Legarda expressed her intention to propose an amendment to Section 9 because it does not clearly state that the NDF's process for reviewing and updating its "essential medicines" list would be followed. Senator Cayetano (P) welcomed the proposal, adding that her committee does not want to make it seem as if legislators would be dictating which medicines could be included in the list. Senator Legarda said that the proposed amendment would show that Congress was not taking on the role of the medical practitioners who are part of the Committee that evaluates and determines which should be included in the essentials medicines list to be carried by the National Drug Formulary. Senator Cayetano (P) remarked that offhand, the amendment could be worded as "The National Drug Formulary shall include family planning supplies" to establish the fact that the supplies should be included in the list but that the National Drug Formulary would determine which items could be added. Senator Legarda added that it should be prepared through a process that is participative and deliberative and in coordination or respecting existing laws. She said that she will provide the amendment at the proper time. ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF THE PRESENCE OF GUESTS At this juncture, Senator Sotto acknowledged the presence in the gallery of the following guests: • Ms. Ulrika Carlsson, member of the

Swedish Parliament and chair of the Cross Party Children Rights Group; • Mr, Morgan Johansson, Member of the Swedish Parliament and Chair of the Committee on Justice; Ms. Elisabeth Dahlin, Secretary General of Save the Children Sweden; Staffan Janson, Professor of the University of Karstad, Sweden; Mr. Sven Malmberg, Minister of the Embassy of Sweden to the Philippines and; Officers of Save the Children Philippines and the Philippine Legislators' Committee on Population and Development (PLPCD).

• • •

Senate President Pro Tempore Ejercito Estrada welcomed the guests to the Senate. INTERPELLATION OF SENATOR LEGARDA (Continuation) Asked whether Section 10 (Procurement and Distribution of Family Planning Supplies) refers to funding which is over and above the PDAF of legislators and the IRA of local goverrnnent officials, Senator Cayetano (P) said that Section 10 seeks to increase the budget of the DOH to allow for the procurement of family planning supplies. She said that the recent budget deliberations showed that there was still a need to increase the budget of the DOH especially for the needs of the poor, and the bill seeks to procure more medical and health care supplies as well as supplement the budgets of the local governments. Moreover, she believed that it is the responsibility of every LGU to effectively provide for basic health care but through a support system wherein the budgets of the poorer LGUs from the fifth, fourth and thirdclass municipalities can be supplemented. Asked if this is an additional IRA for LGUs and additional PDAF for congressmen, Senator Cayetano (P) explained that the funds would be included in the budget of the DOH, and since the DOH has already geographically identified the areas with these unmet need, it must work with the LGUs for the planning and implementation of the procurement and distribution program.

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Asked on the current level of health expenditure in the Philippines compared to the WHOrecommended expenditure level, Senator Cayetano (P) replied that while WHO recommends that 5% of the country's GNP should be allocated for health care, the Philippines only spends 2% to 3% every year which is way below the recommended health care expenditures. She said that while she welcomed the latest increase in the DOH's budget, there were still a lot of unmet needs especially with regard to reproductive health.

ADJOURNMENT OF SESSION
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Senate President Pro Tempore declared the session adjourned until nine o'clock in the morning of Tuesday, February 7, 2012.
It was 11:40 a.m.

MANIFESTATION OF SENATOR SOTTO
At this point, Senator Sotto requested that the interpellations be scheduled for next Wednesday, February 8, 2012, because the Body has to prepare for the impeachment trial court at two o'clock in the afternoon.

I hereby certify to the correctness of the foregoing.

SUSPENSION OF CONSIDERATION OF SENATE BILL NO. 2865
Upon motion of Senator Sotto, there being no objection, the Body suspended consideration of the bill.

Approved on February 7, 2012