Senate committee posts almost complete
Sen. Panfilo Lacson said he spoke to Senate President Vicente Sotto III several days ago and the latter assured him that the issues of Senate committee chairmanships are almost resolved.
Geremy Pintolo/File
Senate committee posts almost complete
Cecille Suerte Felipe (The Philippine Star) - June 16, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The issues on the Senate committee chairmanships are almost settled with only one or two panels still to be resolved by Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said yesterday.

Lacson said he spoke to Sotto several days ago and the latter assured him that the issues of Senate committee chairmanships are almost resolved.

“It’s almost done, last Thursday we talked and he said one to two committees nalang. It’s not a headache for him and it’s easy to resolve,” Lacson told radio dwIZ.

Lacson said he even volunteered to give up his committee chairmanship if it means lesser headache for the Senate President.

Earlier, some neophyte senators were reportedly eyeing major Senate committees, which is a violation of the time-honored tradition of equity of the incumbent in the Senate.

Under the tradition, senior senators or those serving the second three-year term are allowed to keep their committee chairmanship or choose their preferred committee.

Lacson said returning Sen. Pia Cayetano has reportedly considered accepting the Senate committee on ways and means, which handles matters relating to taxes and fees, tariffs, loans and other sources and forms of revenue.

Lacson said Sotto would like him to keep the Senate committee on accounts, tasked to handle the auditing and adjustment of all accounts chargeable against the funds for the expenses and activities of the Senate.

He said Sotto wants him to keep the committee on accounts mainly due to the pending relocation of the Senate to the Bonifacio Global City.

Sotto is expected to meet with the minority senators and the majority group to finalize their committee assignments with the least amount of grumbling. It is the majority bloc, however, that decides on the matter.

The issue of committee assignments has been a source of intrigue in the chamber that also triggered rumors of Sotto’s ouster, supposedly spearheaded by some neophyte senators seeking certain chairmanships.

But a meeting hosted by Sen. Manny Pacquiao in his Makati City mansion last Wednesday helped smoothen things out, according to the senators who attended the dinner.

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