House censures Alvarez over ‘seditious’ remarks

Shiela Crisostomo - The Philippine Star
House censures Alvarez over �seditious� remarks
This photo shows a picture of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — The House of Representatives issued last night the penalty of censure against Davao del Norte 1st District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez following the “disorderly conduct” complaint filed against him over his call to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to withdraw their support of President Marcos in April.

The chamber had adopted the recommendation of the House committee on ethics and privileges contained in Committee Report No. 1103.

It was affirmed through nominal voting during last night’s plenary session with 186 favorable votes against 5 opposition and 7 abstentions.

Panel chair and COOP-NATCCO party-list Rep. Felimon Espares, who read the report, said they originally recommended a 60-day suspension against Alvarez, who is a known close ally of former president Rodrigo Duterte.

Camiguin Rep. Jesus Jurdin Romualdo and Northern Samar Rep. Paul Daza have moved for the penalty to be reduced as they found it too harsh.

The ruling stemmed from the “disorderly conduct” complaint filed by Tagum City Mayor Rey Uy against Alvarez who called on the AFP to turn their backs on the President to avoid escalation of tension in the West Philippine Sea.

The committee held its last hearing on Tuesday and terminated the reception of evidence on the complaint.

Uy’s camp had presented five witnesses, including himself, who testified on the veracity of the mayor’s allegation against Alvarez.

Alvarez’s camp was planning to present “legal luminaries” who were supposed to testify that his pronouncement was not seditious.

Instead they simply offered their “oral summary” that he was just exercising his “freedom of speech” when he made the call to the AFP.

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