Press Release
May 30, 2016

Transcript of Ambush Interview with Senate President Franklin M. Drilon

Q: May timetable po ba sa pag-bid sa Senate Presidency?

SPFMD: There is no timetable. Whether it is today or July 22 or whatever, there is no timeframe, except on the last Monday of July.

Q: Sir, si Senator Alan Cayetano, nabanggit na may commitment na yung 15 senators sa kanya.

SPFMD: I have always said that whoever has 13 signatures electing Senator XYZ to lead the 17th Congress, I am willing to yield the Senate presidency.

Q: Sir yung LP bloc nagbigay na ba ng commitment?

SPFMD: As I have said, those who have 13 signatures, just present to me the resolution, and there's no problem.

Q: Sir marami ang LP dito sa Senate, dito sa Senate napag-uusapan niyo na po ba yan?

SPFMD: Itatawid pa namin itong proclamation, mauna yan.

Q: Si Senator Alan Cayetano is also saying na Malacanang is calling several senators to convince them to keep the Senate leadership LP (Liberal Party).

SPFMD: I don't think so. I have no information on that, and I deny that.

Q: Sir sa tingin niyo po ba may gumagalaw na for the Senate presidency?

SPFMD: As I said, whoever has 13 I can immediately yield the post to them.

Q: Pag nangyari yun, magiging minority ang LP?

SPFMD: When they have the 13, then we will decide what we will do.

Q: First time po na may i-proclaim na president in absentia?

SPFMD: To my recollection yes, although attendance is not a requirement. The proclamation can be done without the presence of the candidate. What is important is that we perform our constitutional duty as the National Board of Canvassers to proclaim the president and the vice-president in the May 9, 2016 elections. We consider the proclamation as a constitutionally mandated duty of Congress and we will perform. It is not affected by the absence of the proclaimed winners, but it is a constitutional act, which is critical to the peaceful transfer of power between one administration to the other.

We will perform our constitutional task, so that there will be stability in our political system, because you can only imagine what will happen to our country if we do not proclaim any president or vice-president. And we will perform the task this afternoon, we will comply with our constitutional duty.

Q: On a Cabinet position in the Duterte admin for Vice President-elect Robredo

SPFMD: The matter of being a member of the Cabinet is a matter that rests on the trust and confidence of the president. Vice-President Robredo has offered her hand of cooperation, that is a matter for President-elect Duterte to consider.

Q: Traditionally, ang Vice President ba may Cabinet post?

SPFMD: Well if you look at our history, Vice President Gloria Macapagal- Arroyo was given the DSWD portfolio, Vice President Noli de Castro and Vice President Jojo Binay were given the housing portfolio. Vice President Erap Estrada was given the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Task Force with a Cabinet position. That is our political history.

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