Voting on Cayetano’s resignation offer was a waste of time — Nograles
MANILA, Philippines — Voting on the offer to resign of Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano the other day was a waste of legislative time especially when such a process is not stipulated in the rules and amid more pressing concerns, PBA party-list Rep. Jericho Nograles said Thursday.
Nograles, in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel on Thursday, bared that he did not participate in the nominal voting for the motion to reject Cayetano’s resignation offer during Wednesday’s session.
The lawmaker pointed out that there is a difference between resigning and offering to resign. In Cayetano’s case, Nograles said he only offered to resign.
“When the voting already started, when the motion was placed and it started, I just decided to walk out of the hall. It’s something that I cannot, in good conscience, participate and charge it to taxpayers’ time. This was a waste of legislative time,” Nograles said.
“We have so much to tackle in the budget. Even in the pre-plenary sessions of the budget, so many questions and so many members were not allowed to speak and were promised that they would have their time to speak during the plenary sessions,” he added.
Further, Nograles said that Cayetano should have just pushed through with his initial plan to deliver his speech on Facebook.
“No less than Speaker Cayetano said at the beginning of his speech yesterday that he initially intended to speak before Facebook. He wanted to go on Facebook live. I think he should have followed his first gut feel, I suppose. He should have followed that rather than charge it to taxpayers’ time,” Nograles said.
“Correct that it is matter of personal and collective privilege but such privilege should not be abused. Yesterday was an abuse of privilege. It’s sad,” he added.
Nograles explained that the rules of the House only delve into an actual resignation and not an offer to resign, saying that resignation is a personal choice and not up to Congress or the body to decide on the action of an officer.
He was referring to Section XIII of the rules of the House which states that “a vacancy is created whenever any of the officers dies, resigns, or is permanently incapacitated, or when the House declares any office vacant.”
“In case of death, resignation or permanent incapacity of the Speaker, an Acting Speaker chosen by a majority of the Deputy Speakers from among themselves, shall assume the duties of the Speaker until a new Speaker is elected,” the rules states.
After Cayetano offered to resign from his post, Anakalusugan party-list Rep. Mike Defensor moved to reject Cayetano’s resignation offer, which was seconded by Bulacan 1st Dist. Rep. Jose Antonio Sy Alvarado.
Both lawmakers are known allies of Cayetano.
The motion was initially approved through voice voting but Deputy Speaker Raneo Abu later announced that nominal voting would be done.
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