MANILA, Philippines—Frustrated over frequent absenteeism on the floor, Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman has written his fellow congressmen urging them to make a “sacrifice” and show up during plenary deliberations on his pet proposal, the reproductive health (RH) bill.
“Let us collectively seize the moment and deliver without further delay the bill which is pregnant with fulfillment for maternal and infant health, reproductive self-determination as a human right, and sustainable human development,” he wrote in a letter titled “Appeal to All Authors and Advocates of the RH Bill.”
“Let us offer our constituents a small measure of sacrifice by responding to this urgent quorum call.”
Lagman, chief proponent of House Bill No. 4244, said his letter was sent to more than 100 coauthors and “another group of several dozens of confirmed advocates and supporters who are committed to vote for the measure.”
The bill got stuck in the stage allotted for amendments and could not barrel through primarily because of lack of quorum.
Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales II noted that most of the lawmakers who skipped the session supported the measure.
Lagman disagreed. He said, “I am happy to note that despite the absence of a quorum during the previous session days, majority of those who responded to the roll call are RH authors and advocates.”