Romualdez: ‘Likelihood’ of extending validity of Bayanihan 2 ‘becoming dimmer’
MANILA, Philippines — Bayanihan to Recover as One Act or Bayanihan 2’s validity period is nearing its end and the possibility of its extension “is becoming dimmer at this point,” House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez said Monday.
Romualdez said that Bayanihan 2, which is set to expire on June 30, was not discussed during President Rodrigo Duterte’s meeting with lawmakers in Malacanang last June 24.
“Bayanihan 2 will expire on June 30 so it’s looking quite tight and the likelihood of an extension is becoming dimmer at this point,” Romualdez told reporters in an online interview.
The possibility of a special session earlier floated to extend the validity of Bayanihan 2. A special session is needed to extend the measure’s validity since the House of Representatives and the Senate are both on break and will not resume until July 26.
However, Romualdez said it is becoming harder to hold a special session before June 30, especially as the Palace has yet to issue a certification of urgency on extending Bayanihan 2.
“With respect to Bayanihan 2 kasi deadline na June 30, eh medyo gipit na sa oras kaya lumalabo na ang ating pagho-hold special session,” Romualdez said.
“This instance we usually would await for proclamation by Malacanang for a call for a special session and for a matter like this that is really under time element, dapat may declaration or certification of its urgency. We have not had that yet,” he added.
Further, Romualdez said: “Mukhang maraming challenge at medyo lumalabo na ang special session this week.”
Bayanihan 2 still has over P18 billion in unused funds for critical response programs for health, public transport, education, agriculture, tourism, labor and social welfare.
If the measure expires, the unused funds will go to the National Treasury.
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