Anti-FOI solons employ delaying tactics in hearing
MANILA, Philippines – Attempts to delay the passage of the Freedom of Information bill became evident Tuesday when deliberations were channelled to what should be the national sign language at the House of Representatives.
Cagayan de Oro Representative Rufus Rodriguez started by questioning proposed measures seeking to declare the Filipino sign language as the national sign language.
Instead of having hand gestures pertaining to letters as with the American sign language, Bayan Muna Partylist Representative Teddy Casino argued that what made Filipino sign language better was that it was based on “signs and not words.”
Rodriguez insisted that those from areas with different dialects might not be comfortable with “Filipino sign language” to which Casino said, “Isa lang ang translation in sign language whatever the dialect [There is only one translation in sign language no matter what the dialect].”
Bagong Henerasyon Partylist Representative Bernadette Herrera-Dy said that FSL was not compatible with international sign language users.
Nueva Ecija Representative Rodolfo Antonino said that if FSL was imposed on local media outfits, “they may lose their foreign audience.”
Zambales Representative Mitos Magsaysay, however, saw the issue as one on “the interpretation of [the term] Filipino sign language” and not on the type of sign language itself.
In the middle of the heated debate, members of the audience kept mumbling “okay na yan. Tama na yan [It’s okay. Enough]” as they were impatient for the panel to move to discussions on the FOI Bill.
Lawmakers eventually voted against deleting the term “Filipino” from the proposed measures.
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