Belmonte, 59 lawmakers post perfect attendance in 16th Congress
(The Philippine Star) - July 21, 2016 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. led 60 members of the House of Representatives who posted perfect attendance in the last session of Congress.

The House was supposed to have convened for 52 days between July 27, 2015 and June 6 this year. However, the chamber conducted a roll call only on 23 session days.

Belmonte, who was speaker then, was present in all 23 sessions.

Others who had perfect attendance included former majority leader Neptali Gonzales II, Rodolfo Albano III of Isabela, Jose Christopher Belmonte of Quezon City, Lito Atienza of Buhay, Eleandro Jesus Madrona of Romblon, Rodolfo Fariñas of Ilocos Norte, Carlos Padilla of Nueva Vizcaya, Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro City, Oscar Rodriguez of Pampanga, Jorge Banal of Quezon City, Raul del Mar of Cebu City and Magtanggol Gunigundo 1 of Valenzuela City.

Reps. Rosemarie Arenas of Pangasinan, Evelyn Escudero of Sorsogon, Herminia Roman of Bataan, Winston Castelo of Quezon City, Christopher Co of Ako Bicol, Roberto Puno of Antipolo City, Romero Quimbo of Marikina, Neil Montejo of An Waray and Ibarra Gutierrez of Akbayan also showed up in all 23 sessions.

Former president and Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and former Sarangani congressman and now Sen. Manny Pacquiao led the top absentees.

Arroyo had zero attendance as she was detained on a plunder case. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court dismissed the case and ordered her release.

Pacquiao showed up in only one of 23 sessions when the House called the roll of members. After his election as senator, he has promised to improve his performance and devote more time to his law-making job.

There is only one other member with the same attendance record as the boxing champion, and he is detained. Abdullah Dimaporo of Lanao del Norte is facing graft charges before the Sandiganbayan.

Julio Ledesma IV of Negros Occidental and Franklin Bautista of Davao del Sur were present in only three sessions, while Grex Lagman of Albay, Seth Frederick Jalosjos of Zamboanga del Norte and Hernan Biron Jr. of Iloilo showed up in four.

Kimi Cojuangco of Pangasinan, Magnolia Antonino of Nueva Ecija and Ma. Theresa Bonoan of Manila turned up in five sessions.

Ruby Sahali of Sulu and Ronald Singson of Ilocos Sur were present in six sessions, while Vicente Belmonte of Iligan City showed up in seven.

Joseph Durano of Cebu, Francisco Calalay Jr. of Quezon City, Douglas Hagedorn of Palawan, Francisco Matugas of Surigao del Norte, Damian Mercado of Southern Leyte and Elmer Panotes of Camarines Norte attended eight sessions.

Several members missed only one session. Among them were Elpidio Barzaga Jr. of Cavite, Alfred Vargas of Quezon City, Gus Tambunting of Parañaque, Eric Singson of Ilocos Sur, Josephine Veronique Lacson-Noel of Malabon and Victoria Noel of An Waray.

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