News Briefs: March 5, 2019

05:15 AM March 05, 2019

Duterte ‘may consider’ Lacson’s complaint on spending measure



Malacañang on Monday said President RodruDuterte would likely consider the allegation of Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson that House leaders made changes to the much-delayed 2019 national budget when he reviewed the measure.

“Certainly, the President, he listens and he decides,” presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said. “The President has to review [the budget measure] and decide on the basis of what the Constitution requires.”


Lacson said last week that he received information from some congressmen that the House leadership was still “waiting for several congressmen to finalize the submission of their individual projects.”

He said this was a “clear abuse of discretion, especially if done without the concurrence of the Senate.” —ChHRISTINE O. AVENDAÑO


Duterte to welcome Mahathir at Palace on Thursday

President Rodrigo Duterte will welcome Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to Malacañang on Thursday, the second day of the Malaysian leader’s two-day visit to the country.

It will be Mahathir’s first visit to the country since his reelection as prime minister last year. He also visited the country in 1987 and 1994. “The official visit of the prime minister reciprocates President Duterte’s visit to Malaysia… last July 2018,” presidential  spokesperson Salvador Panelo said on Monday. “The two leaders will hold a bilateral meeting and discuss cooperation in the political, economic and people-to-people spheres and exchange views on topics of mutual importance,” Panelo said. —CHRISTINE O. AVENDAÑO

Risa’s tour to explain benefits of maternity leave law


Sen. Risa Hontiveros will embark on a health tour to explain the benefits of the Expanded Maternity Leave Law and to correct misconceptions about the legislation.

Hontiveros, the law’s main proponent in the Senate, said her information drive would be in time for the release of the law’s implementing rules and regulations in May.

She said she would also visit communities to promote vaccination.

The new law grants 105 days of paid maternity leave to working mothers in government and the private sector, while single mothers get an additional 15 days. —Leila B. Salaverria

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