On Cha-cha: Minority not informed, consulted

News Release
30 September 2011

Pia on Senate leadership’s Cha-cha agenda: ‘Minority was not informed, consulted’

Transcript of interview with Senator Pia S. Cayetano
Member, Senate Minority
Recto Room, Philippine Senate

Q: Your reaction on the new Charter change (Cha-cha) initiative…
SPSC: I was surprised because the agenda (of Wednesday’s legislative summit) didn’t include anything about Cha-cha. So actually nagulat ako kasi yun nga, wala naman sa agenda yon. Hindi ako aware na mayroong topic na ganun ang pag-uusapan, ang alam ko legislative agenda and in fact, I already put forth our priorities which, as you know, are RH bill [SBN 2865] and Sustainable Transportation [SBN 2936]. The last that I heard of this was about six months ago, so honestly this was a surprise to me.

I guess in due time, dapat din naman itong pag-usapan. Pero siguro yung timing lang. Kasi right now, mayroon tayong malaking issue about the very big effect of this typhoon [Pedring]. Syempre people are very sensitive. I think the word “Cha-cha” gives people an allergic reaction. So that has to be handled sensitively, and honestly, it was never discussed with us in caucus that this will be coming up, na kung ‘ok ba kami.’

So ano ba ito? Is this a meeting between the leaders of our legislative bodies because I know that as a rule, the legislative bodies make decisions collectively.

Q: So hindi kayo nakonsulta?

SPSC: Wala talaga. Let us assume na lang siguro that this is an initiative of the legislative heads, the Senate President and the Speaker of the House, and maybe they will still take it up with us. Kasi if the body will already adopt it, hindi tayo aware, eh kami naman ay part of the body. Now maybe the Majority has discussed this because I’m in the Minority.

As a senator, as a member of a chamber of only twenty–three, hindi ako nasabihan na madi-discuss ito very soon, na magiging issue ito. #

LEFT OUT, BUT NOT TO BE OUTDONE. File photo shows Senate Minority members Joker Arroyo, Pia Cayetano and Minority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano.

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