Press Release
June 7, 2011

TRANSCRIPT OF AMBUSH INTERVIEW WITH SEN. FRANKLIN DRILON
Session hall

Q: Some quarters are saying na baka i-question sa Supreme Court ang move ng Senate?

Pribilehiyo po nilang dalhin sa Korte Suprema ang kaso, wala pong makakapigil sa kanila ngunit ako po ay naniniwala na may basehan ang aming ginawang ipagpaliban ang halalan (at isabay sa halalan) sa Mayo 2013. Yan po ang desisyon ng Korte Suprema sa Osmena vs. Comelec na dapat sbay-sabay ang halalan sa ating bansa. Minsan lang sa 3 taon. At ang pagkaroon ng halalan sa ARMM sa August 8, 2011 ay hindi sang-ayon sa ating Saligang Batas at sa desisyon ng Korte Suprema sa Osmena vs. Comelec.

Q: (inaudible)

Sa akin dahilan sa ang qualification at eligibility ng isang kandidato ay nakalagay sa Organic Act at wala sa Organic Act ang diskwalipikasyon ng isang OIC na tumakbo sa halalan.

Q: (inaudible)

Naniniwala ako na kahit incumbent sila, kung hindi maayos ang kanilang pagpapatakbo ay matatalo din sila. Yan po nung 2007, kapanahunan ng dating administrasyon, lahat ng pera, lahat ng kapangyarihan nasa kanila ay natalo sila sa national election. Pangalawa, kung talagang magaling ang incumbent at magaling siguro dahil manatili siyang incumbent ng ilang taon ay karapat-dapat ma re-elect siya.

Q: Is that two birds in one stone? One is the postponement, the other is allowing OICs to run.

First, the postponement of the election is because of the constitutional mandate to have synchronized election. Allowing the OICs to run in the election is a matter of law, again, because the Organic Act imposes qualifications. And you cannot impose additional disqualifications simply because the Organic Act is not amended and cannot be amended at this point. In other words, you cannot amend through ordinary legislation the Organic Act and the Organic Act enumerates what are the qualifications to run for governor, vice-governor etc. of the ARMM. To include a disqualification for those who are OICs, in my mind, as a lawyer, cannot be done because you are imposing an additional qualification and in effect amending the Organic Act.

Q: Reactions on Mar Roxas being appointed as DoTC secretary.

He is qualified and competent to handle that. He has managed a Cabinet department beforeóthe Department of Trade and Industry. I congratulate and extend my congratulations to Sen. Mar Roxas.

Q: On his appointment as DoTC chief rather than presidential chief of staff.

Pare-pareho sa akin yan. Siya lang po ay nanunungkulan at the pleasure of the President.

Q: You expressed your reservations on the committee report of RH bill.

I want it debated on the floor. I want to be able to raise questions on the floor and I do not want to be precluded by signing without that qualification.

Q: Is there enough time to ratify the ARMM bill?

Two things can happen: either the House accepts our amendment and therefore that would dispense with the bicam, or if they will not accept, we can still meet in bicam tomorrow morning. I don't think that differences are that substantial. We can finish the bicam in 1 hour and submit it for ratification tomorrow afternoon. But I am confident that if the House will look at our amendments, I don't think there is any substantial difference. I have very briefly discussed with Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales the deletion of the ineligibility of the OIC and he has no problems with that. That is the most substantial amendment that we made.

Q: So most probably the House will adopt the amendments?

There's a chance that they will just adopt it.

Q: Did you transmit it already?

Yes, transmitted officially to the House today.

Q: When can you have this ready for signing?

By next week, it should be ready.

2nd part:

Q: So dapat mag-stop na ang Comelec sa preparations for ARMM polls?

Yes.

Q: Kahit pwede pa yang iakyat sa Supreme Court.

Iakyat man sa Supreme Court, if there is no TRO, the Comelec should stop preparations.

Q: Confident din kayo sa chances nyo sa Supreme Court?

I am confident because what we just did was to follow the Supreme Court decision.

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