Lagman: Claim of anti-RH lobby an old tale
Minority Leader Edcel Lagman has dismissed as an “old yarn” the claim of Cebu Representative Pablo Garcia that the passage of the reproductive health bill in Congress was being bankrolled with a P20 million to P50 million lobby fund from Washington.
“This is a dead and fossilized tirade which anti-RH solons like Cebu Representative Pablo Garcia try to resurrect every time the RH bill is on the threshold of approval. Allegation is not proof. Garcia has consistently failed to prove his bare allegations,” said Lagman, the main author of the bill.
Garcia claimed in a privilege speech that pro-RH bill advocates were being manipulated by a foreign power.
But Lagman said that Garcia’s accusation was meant to “bait RH advocates into protracted and repetitive debates in order to further delay the passage of the RH bill, but there were no takers because the ploy of Garcia was too obvious and crude.”
Lagman charged Garcia with being “myopic” to a well-oiled lobby opposing the RH bill that is funded by the “wealthy Catholic hierarchy,” as he stressed that pro-RH advocates were “nationalist legislators who would not take a cent from foreign lobbyists.”
He noted that Garcia had consistently opposed, and often lost, progressive legislation such as the comprehensive agrarian reform program and the abolition of the death penalty.
Lagman also defended the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population and Development (PLCPD) which Garcia said was the de facto House committee steering the debates on the RH bill.