Press Release
January 25, 2016

Transcript of Media Interview with Senate President Franklin M. Drilon

Q: Sir ano po yung napag-usapan ninyo ni Miss Pia Wurtzbach?

SPFMD: You'll be surprised. She intimated to me that she wants to join politics. You know, given her politically conscious responses to the questions, I am not surprised. You know the question was very political - the presence of the American bases, the presence of American troops, the matter of the HIV, her views on a number of critical issues.

I have advised her that if she's really interested in joining government, she would be a very strong advocate of issues that she has expressed her opinions on. And, I advised her to first try her hand in some appointed position where she can push her advocacy, rather than join the politics in an election.

That's my advise to her, she is very politically aware, to seek an appointed position in areas where she can push her advocacy, but she indeed expressed interest in joining politics.

Q: After her reign?

SPFMD: Of course, after her stint. And you know, that's very admirable, for her to have stated that. Given the political divide that we see today, for her to express her interest in politics is something that is admirable for a young woman.

Q: Did you invite her to join the Liberal Party?

SPFMD: She is interested in her advocacy, in pushing her advocacies. That should not be necessarily equated with joining a political party.

Q: Why did you advice her to first seek an appointed position?

SPFMD: So that at that point she can really push her advocacies, rather than get involved in the very nasty business of politics, especially local politics.

Q: What do you think are the positions will be good for her?

SPFMD: I would not know. I am just saying that those positions where she can push her advocacies. She has expressed her advocacies on HIV, on gender equality.

Q: Si retired PNP Superintendent Valeroso, mayroon daw pong audio recording ng conversation between a top government official and a legislator regarding the Mamasapano incident.

SPFMD: There was something that came out April of last year, I don't know if this is the same thing, on an alleged conversation between Secretary Deles and Senator Bongbong Marcos, that came out. Now is this the same audiovisual recording? I don't know, but if it is maybe it is an old issue.

But let me just remind Valeroso that under Republic Act 4200 the unauthorized recording of conversations is unlawful, and may be punishable by 6 months to 1 year. Not only the unauthorized recording, but also the possession of such an authorized recording is also unlawful. Not only possession, but also communicating these unauthorized recordings is also unlawful. And the evidence of such a conversation is also inadmissible as evidence under the Anti- Wiretapping Act, this is the Republic Act 4200.

But you know, it's really up to the committee whether or not this will be allowed. I am just stating the law, lest they say again that we are suppressing the evidence, we are not. We are just stating the present law. Now if the committee chooses to disregard this, and play whatever that recording is, then that is a decision that the committee will have to make.

But I would have to repeat, under Section 1 of the Republic Act 4200, the Anti-Wiretapping Law, it is unlawful to tape any conversation without any authority, it is unlawful to have in possession of such unauthorized taping, and it is unlawful to communicate or furnish transcriptions of such unlawful recording. It also falls under Section 4 of Republic Act 4200 that such a recording cannot be admitted in any legislative investigation. But that is now up to the committee to decide, given all these legal restrictions, the illegality of the alleged tape recording.

Q: Ang assumption, illegal po yung tape recording?

SPFMD: That is the assumption.

Q: Even in an executive session, hindi pwede gawing evidence o iplay?

SPFMD: No, it can not be.

Q: Just to find out if the recording, unauthorized siya or hindi.

SPFMD: I have been describing to you Sections 1 and 4 of Republic 4200, it is unlawful to record without authority, it is unlawful to even possess that recording, it is unlawful to communicate to another person such a recording, and the evidence is inadmissible in court.

But as I said, again, charges will be made saying we are suppressing these evidence, we are just stating the law. It is up to the committee to decide.

Q: How about senators listening?

SPFMD: We are not above the law. The law provides no exemption.

Q: Sir do you believe may political agenda dito sa audio recording?

SPFMD: I am just stating the facts. If this is the same audio recording in April na lumabas, it is obviously political gimmickry. We do not know if this is the recording.

Q: Si Senator Trillanes said he wants to release the transcripts of the executive sessions, ano po yung procedure?

SPFMD: There is a process under our rules when we release the transcripts of testimonies during the executive session. There are requirements, I can't exactly remember now, you can check the rules. But there is a process, so this must be decided by the committee. The request for the release of the transcript of notes taken during the executive sessions, it can be done, there is a process.

Q: Kung may maglalabas po ng recording, haharangin mo po ba?

SPFMD: I have already described what the law is. I will just state what the law is. It is up to the committee to decide. I have already stated my position.

Q: Si Comelec chair Bautista, may positive response na ba doon sa request ninyo?

SPFMD: I have not received any positive response, but in the interest of an orderly election, I reiterate my request that the printing of the ballots will be done after the Supreme Court has decided. It does not require much thinking. If there are ten printers to print the ballots in three months, then hire twenty printers to print the ballots in less than three months. For an orderly process I would strongly recommend this. Wala namang matatalo doon.

Q: Are senators now trying to recall their conversations with any certain government official during the Mamasapano incident?

SPFMD: Ako I am not trying to recall, because to me, it is completely illegal for anyone punishable with imprisonment to record my conversation without my knowledge.

News Latest News Feed