Alvarez rules out ‘lobby money’ in new mining bill
Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez has dismissed insinuations that his proposal requiring mining companies to obtain a congressional franchise was motivated by the prospect of lobby money.
“That’s purely hypothetical. That’s just a figment of their imagination,” Alvarez said in an interview before he filed House Bill No. 6259.
But Alvarez admitted he could not guarantee there would be no bribery in the process of acquiring a congressional franchise.
“I don’t see any safeguards, because the only safeguard is the trust and confidence of the people who voted for their congressmen and senators,” he said.
In his 16-page bill amending the Philippine Mining Act of 1995, all mining firms must first secure a legislative franchise before they apply for government permits. —DJ YAP
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