Press Release
July 28, 2011


Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago, chair of the subcommittee on the International Criminal Court, was obviously ill with hypertension, when she arrived at the Senate.

She presided over the public hearing on whether the Senate should concur with the ratification by President Aquino of the Rome Statute which created the International Criminal Court.

Santiago arrived pale and audibly panting at the hearing room where she apologized to Sen. Loren Legarda, DFA Sec. Albert del Rosario, Defense Sec. Voltaire Gazmin, Gen. Eduardo Oban, AFP chief of staff, and others present.

Legarda called for Santiago's aides to assist her and to give water to her, but Santiago said "this is beyond water."

She visibly improved while the hearing was taking place, but she kept it short by summarizing the pros and cons of the treaty herself.

She told media she has been dizzy and suffering from hypertension for the past two months, but forced herself to comply with her Senate duties, because she does not want to go on sick leave again.

Before the last Senate recess, Santiago was on sick leave for some six months because of hypothyroidism.

Santiago, who is scheduled to defend the RH bill this Monday, 1 August, said that she would proceed to defend the Rome Statute the next Monday, 8 August.

She told media she has been under medication for hypertension, but cannot increase the dosage because it might incapacitate her from work.

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