Aquino: FOI bill up to Congress
President Aquino has left in Congress’ hands the fate of the proposed Freedom of Information (FOI) law as he declined to certify the measure as urgent in the same level as the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).
In a multimedia forum of the Inquirer Group, the President said he was fine with the current version of the FOI pending in the House of Representatives.
“There is no change in FOI. We have submitted our position we can live with the version based on their amendments. The question should be brought to Congress and the Senate rather than us because we are okay with the version as amended,” said the President.
The President did not include the FOI Law in his State of the Nation Address (Sona) on July 27. But he made a surprising turnaround the following day and surprised media when he included the FOI among the priority bills in his budget message.
When asked to compare his preference for the FOI versus the BBL, The President said he had too many bills that he certified as urgent and that Congress does not have enough time to approve it.
“By my last count, I have something like 24 or 25 priorities. I think I’m, still short of (bills) that I need to certify as urgent. But Congress is telling me: what is the most important with you? You want all 25, you want all 30? What is the most immediate which you want to happen,” said the President.
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