Category: Sponsorship Speeches

Sponsorship Speech for Resolutions on the Grant of Amnesty

Mr. President, distinguished colleagues:

Never in our history has our nation sought and demanded a ‘time of healing’ with much fervor and tenacity than we do today — healing from the health crisis which scarred our people; healing from the economic, social, and political distress that, by and large, spoiled our nation.

I rise before you today for a parallel cause: a chance to heal the open wounds brought by our endless battle for peace and unification; an opportune time to embrace back into society those who went beyond the folds of our laws in furtherance of their political beliefs and aspirations.

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Co-Sponsorship Speech Honoring the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos of 2021

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to co-sponsor Senate Resolution No. 838 entitled “Resolution Honoring and Commending the Metrobank Foundation’s Outstanding Filipinos of 2021.”

At a time when the world is facing a grave health crisis, it is on very rare occasions that we find ourselves on the same ground from which hope springs and optimism thrives. Today is one such occasion with the presence of inspirational public servants who are named as Metrobank Foundation’s Outstanding Filipinos of 2021.

Mr. President, we gain high spirits when Filipinos find pride in their work, build avenues for change, and remain on course despite the challenges of our generation. Today’s outstanding teachers, soldiers, and police officers are a testament to this.

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Sponsorship Speech for DFA Officials at the Commission on Appointments

(Delivered by Rep. Luis ‘Jonjon’ Ferrer IV on Sen. Lacson’s behalf) Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of one (1) Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of eighteen (18) Senior Officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of five (5) Senior Officials who are promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; six (6) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; five (5) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Career Minister; and, two (2) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class I.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are all fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Co-Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report 270 (Conversion of a Municipality into a Component City)

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to co-sponsor Committee Report No. 270 — a proposed bill that will allow our municipalities to sustain economic viability by attaining cityhood through an exemption from the requirements for city conversion and at the same time, ensure fiscal equity among our existing cities with the adoption of the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) portability.

Mr. President, the principles of creating a sovereign state are simple: the population must be numerous enough to preserve a political entity; its land large enough to sufficiently provide for its people.

Testament to this are the small states such as Monaco, the island state of Naura, Tuvalu, and San Marino — none of them having a land area bigger than 25 square kilometers and population of over 35,000, yet all of them have attained the status as independent states.

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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report 297 for Senate Bill 2376 (Strengthening AFP Professionalism and Continuity)

Mr. President and distinguished colleagues, it is my honor to report on the floor Senate Bill No. 2376 entitled, “An Act Strengthening Professionalism and Continuity of the Policies and Modernization Initiatives of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Providing Funds Therefor, and for Other Purposes” as embodied in Committee Report No. 297 in substitution of Senate Bill Nos. 1785, 1045, and 1370 filed by Senators Richard Gordon, Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III and Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, respectively.

The clamor for this measure has echoed from the grounds of Camp Aguinaldo to the halls of the Senate repeatedly over the years. Generations after generations of military men have clamored for this piece of legislation, most of them had long retired from the service without this measure seeing the light of day.

Mr. President, in the three-and-a-half decades of six (6) past and incumbent presidents, we have had 37 Senior Officers appointed to the position of the Chief of Staff.

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Sponsorship Speech for 20 DFA Officials at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of eight (8) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of twelve (12) Senior Officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of two (2) Senior Officials who are promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; four (4) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; five (5) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Career Minister; and, one (1) Senior Official promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class I.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Sponsorship Speech for 16 DFA Officials at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of two (2) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of 14 Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of one (1) Senior Official who is promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; five (5) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; four (4) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Career Minister; and, four (4) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class I.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Co-Sponsorship Speech at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, it is my honor and privilege to second the motion of the distinguished committee chairman from the great province of Cavite for the confirmation of AFP Brigadier General Henry Doyaoen’s promotion to the rank of Major General – but likewise to raise a significant point which is relevant to the nominee’s confirmation today.

Exactly one year from today or on 17 May 2022, Brig. Gen. Doyaoen is due for compulsory retirement in accordance with Presidential Decrees 1638 and 1650. Any delay in the confirmation of his nomination later than today would disqualify him from being promoted to the next high rank of Major General, in so far as the provision of Section 4, Republic Act 8186 is concerned, which states that – let me quote for the record, “except for the Chief of Staff of the AFP, no officer shall be assigned/designated to the aforementioned position – the word aforementioned hereby refers to the positions of Vice Chief of Staff, Deputy Chief of Staff, and major service commanders – or promoted to the rank of Brigadier General/Commodore or higher if he has less than one (1) year of active service remaining prior to compulsory retirement.”

There is no doubt in my mind that Brig. Gen. Doyaoen, a decorated and battle-seasoned military officer for 33 long years, has exemplified competence and commitment to duty worthy of the AFP’s higher echelon of command. Our committee meeting earlier today merely affirmed his good credentials. Thus we decide to recommend to the plenary his confirmation in accordance with what the law and the Constitution so provide.

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Sponsorship Speech for 5 Ambassadors, 51 Senior DFA Officers at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of five (5) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of fifty-one (51) Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of six (6) Senior Officials who are promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; ten (10) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; ten (10) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Career Minister; and, twenty-five (25) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class I.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report on ‘Red-Tagging’

How the government sets a balance between promoting civil liberties and protecting the security of the state defines the foundations of our democracy.

Mr. President, distinguished colleagues of this venerable chamber, I have the honor to report the result of the public hearings, in aid of legislation, conducted by the Committee on National Defense and Security, Peace, Unification and Reconciliation, on the issue on “red-tagging or red-baiting” as embodied in Committee Report No. 186.

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Sponsorship Speech: Senate Resolution Honoring Mayor Vico Sotto

Last Wednesday, February 24, while waiting in the Senate lounge for our 51st Senate session to start, I asked the Senate President if we can be co-authors in a yet-to-be drafted Senate resolution to honor and recognize Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto for receiving an award given by the US State Department as one of the world’s 12 anti-corruption champions. The Senate President’s reluctant response was: Sige, pero co-author lang ako. Ikaw ang principal author and sponsor kasi, alam mo na… with a chuckle. I knew exactly what he was trying to say, Mr. President. It is that little, big thing called “sense of propriety,” better understood by Filipinos as “delicadeza.” All of us inside this hall as well as those attending online know that Mayor Vico is the Senate President’s nephew, being his equally famous brother Vic’s offspring.

That being said, the young mayor has consistently refused to put his picture and name on billboards and similar materials on publicly funded projects in the City of Pasig. What easily comes to mind is our national hero Dr. Jose Rizal who once said, and I quote: “No good water comes from a muddy spring. No sweet fruit comes from a bitter seed.” Let me put it in a more simple language, distinguished colleagues: “Like uncle, like nephew.”

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors Leslie Baja and Raymond Balatbat; and FSO II Leandro Manantan at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of two (2) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary and one (1) Foreign Service Officer Class II of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassador Jose Malaya III and FSO1 Ricarte Abejuella III at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of one (1) Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, and the ad interim appointment of one (1) Foreign Service Officer Class I of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of the body.

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Sponsorship Speech for 13 DFA Officers at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, our common idol, Mr. Senate President – the fightingest secretary of the DFA, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of six (6) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of one (1) Senior Officer to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I, and six (6) Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class II.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that all of the six (6) nominees and seven (7) appointees are fit and qualified to the post and position to which they are respectively promoted or nominated, and ruled to recommend to the plenary their respective nominations and appointments for the consent and confirmation of this august body.

Mr. Chairman, it is therefore my honor and privilege to recommend that the Commission give its consent to the nomination of the following Department of Foreign Affairs’ Senior Officers, namely:

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Sponsorship Speech for Gen. Gilbert Gapay and other Senior AFP Officers at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, this representation as one of the Vice-Chairpersons of the Committee on National Defense, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the ad interim appointments of 29 Senior Officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the nomination of one (1) officer to the rank of General.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that all of the 29 appointees and one nominee are fit and qualified to the ranks which they are respectively promoted or nominated, and has therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their respective appointments and nomination for the confirmation and consent of this august body.

It is my honor and privilege to recommend that this body give its consent to the nomination of LT. GEN. GILBERT I. GAPAY to the rank of GENERAL.

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Sponsorship Speech for Senior AFP Officers at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, this representation as one of the Vice-Chairpersons of the Committee on National Defense, presided over a public hearing to deliberate on the ad interim appointments of 14 Senior Officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the nomination of one officer to the rank of Lieutenant General.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, has determined that all of the 14 appointees and one nominee are fit and qualified to the ranks which they are respectively nominated or appointed, and has therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their respective nomination and appointments for the consent and confirmation of this august body.

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Co-Sponsorship Speech for Senate Bill 1354 (Anti-Perjury Bill)

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, it is my honor to co-sponsor Senate Bill No. 1354 entitled ‘An Act Amending Articles 183 and 184 of Act No. 3815, As Amended, Otherwise Known as the Revised Penal Code,’ as embodied under Committee Report No. 49.

Somebody once said: “He who tells a lie, is not sensible how great a task he undertakes; for he must be forced to invent twenty more to maintain that one.” Nonetheless Mr. President, in my decades of experience as a public servant, I have come face to face with countless instances where a witness went the extra mile to invent hundreds of other lies just to maintain the first lie that he/she made under the sacred oath of truth.

I need not go far, Mr. President. I myself had been a victim of untruthful testimonies fabricated with the end goal of destroying my person. Never would I forget the unadorable persons answering the names of Ador Mawanay and Cezar Mancao, and a host of other characters who weaved unthinkable lies and narratives of the crimes that I supposedly committed.

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors and Foreign Service Officers at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of three Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of 10 Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer II.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that those who are with us in the plenary today are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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Sponsorship Speech for Foreign Service Officers at the Commission on Appointments

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments and nomination of foreign service officers, including:
* 2 Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary
* 1 Foreign Service Officer Class IV
* 1 appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I
* 1 appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II
* 1 appointed to the rank of Career Minister
* 18 appointed to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class II

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of two Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs, and one Foreign Service Officer Class IV.

The Committee likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of 21 Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of one Senior Official who is promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; one Senior Official promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; one Official promoted to the rank of Career Minister; and 18 Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class II.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

It is therefore my honor and privilege to recommend that the Commission give its consent to the nomination of the following Department of Foreign Affairs Senior Officers, namely:

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Sponsorship Speech for the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2019 (18th Congress)

Thank you, Mr. President. Distinguished colleagues, I have the honor to report on the Senate floor Senate Bill No. 1083 entitled “An Act Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act No. 9372,” otherwise Known as “An Act to Secure the State and Protect Our People from Terrorism,” as embodied in Committee Report No. 9 in substitution of Senate Bill Numbers 6, 21, and 30.

The amendment to the Human Security Act of 2007 is among the unfinished business of the 17th Congress. Almost eight months ago, I stood here to sponsor the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2019. Unfortunately, time was not on our side to deliberate on the said measure. Since then, the Filipino people have already been confronted by a number of terrorist attacks. As we speak, terrorist groups are probably planning their next attacks.

Mr. President, we have seen a mutation in the way terrorist groups perpetrate their evil acts since the passage of the Human Security Act. We have seen the phenomenon of terrorism become more complex and malevolent. We have seen how the ISIS’ tactics have changed as the terror group continues to lose ground in Iraq and Syria, how their members and sympathizers are taking the fight here in Southeast Asia.

Related: At a Glance: The Anti-Terrorism Act of 2019 (18th Congress)
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Sponsorship Speech for 53 Foreign Service Officers at the Commission on Appointments

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments and nomination of 53 foreign service officers, including:
* 5 senior officials appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission Class 1
* 10 senior officials appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission Class 2
* 17 senior officials appointed to the rank of Career Ministers
* 20 officials appointed to the rank of Foreign Service Officer Class 1
* 1 officer appointed to the rank of Foreign Service Officer Class 4

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Mr. Chairman, this representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing to deliberate on the ad interim appointments of 52 Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs consisting of five Senior Officials who are promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; 10 Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; 17 Senior Officials promoted to the rank of Career Minister; 20 Officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class I; and the nomination of one officer to the rank of Foreign Service Officer, Class IV.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that all of the 52 appointees and one nominee are fit and qualified to the post where they are respectively nominated or promoted, and has therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their respective nomination and appointments for the consent and confirmation of this august body.

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Sponsorship Speech for the Anti-Terrorism Act (17th Congress)

At the outset, let me state here and now with certainty that a vote for the immediate passage of this measure is a vote for the immediate lifting of Martial Law in Mindanao.

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to report on the Senate floor Senate Bill No. 2204 entitled, “An Act Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act No. 9372, Otherwise Known As “An Act To Secure the State and Protect our People from Terrorism,” as embodied in Committee Report No. 638 in substitution of Senate Bill Numbers 1134, 1396, 1715 and 1956.

Related: Senate Bill 2204: Let Us Toughen the Fight vs Terrorism
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Sponsorship Speech for 5 Ambassadors at the Commission on Appointments

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments of:
* Ma. Teresita Cruz Daza: Ambassador to Chile with concurrent jurisdiction over Ecuador and Peru.
* Christopher Baltazar Montero: Ambassador to Brunei.
* Noel Eugene Eusebio Mejica Servigon: Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the ASEAN in Jakarta.
* Ramon Sevilla Bagatsing Jr.: Ambassador to India, with concurrent jurisdiction over Nepal.
* Noe Albano Wong: Ambassador to Korea.

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, your Committee on Foreign Affairs conducted a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of five Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

After deliberating on the qualifications and fitness of the said nominees during the public hearing, the Committee has determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are being nominated, and therefore ruled to recommend that their nominations be approved by the body.

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Sponsorship Speech for 6 Ambassadors and Chief of Mission

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments of:
* Leah Basinang-Ruiz: Ambassador to Poland with jurisdiction over Georgia and Ukraine; Estonia; Latvia; and Lithuania.
* Alex Garcia Chua: Ambassador to Kenya with jurisdiction over Burundi, Union of the Comoros, Congo, Malawi, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, and South Sudan; and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT).
* Ma. Theresa Dizon-de Vega: Ambassador to Germany.
* Raul Salavaria Hernandez: Ambassador to Turkey with jurisdiction over Georgia and Azerbaijan.
* Leo M. Herrera-Lim: Ambassador to Denmark.
* Jesus Santos Domingo: Ambassador to New Zealand, with jurisdiction over Fiji, Tonga, and Samoa including Cook Islands.
* Henry S. Bensurto, Jr.: Chief of Mission, Class I.

Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, your Committee on Foreign Affairs conducted a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of six Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and the ad interim appointment of one Chief of Mission, Class I.

After deliberating on the qualifications and fitness of the said officials during the public hearing, the Committee has determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their nominations and appointment for the consent of the body.

It is therefore my honor and privilege to recommend that the Commission give its consent to the nominations of the following senior officers of the Department, namely:

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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report on House Bill 1341 (Renaming the Hilltop Rizal PNP Command as Camp General Licerio Geronimo)

Mr. President, distinguished colleagues, I have the honor to report on the floor House Bill No. 1341, under Committee Report Number 574 entitled, “An Act Renaming the Hilltop Rizal Philippine National Police (PNP) Command in the Municipality of Taytay, Province of Rizal as Camp General Licerio Geronimo,” as authored by Honorable Congressmen Romeo M. Acop, Leopoldo N. Bataoil, Gustavo S. Tambunting, and Cristina “Chiqui” Roa-Puno.

Mr. President, records of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) tell us the rich legacy of General Licerio Imaya Geronimo, a Filipino farmer who later became one of the leaders of the secret revolutionary society known as the Katipunan.

General “Cerio,” as he was popularly called, organized forces under his command in the towns of Montalban, San Mateo, and Marikina, all in Morong Province, now referred to as Rizal Province. His brilliant command of his men resulted in the retreat and defeat of the Spanish forces who attacked General Emilio Aguinaldo in Mt. Puray. In 1898, he was designated as the division general of the revolutionary army in San Mateo. When the Filipino-American War began in 1899, he took the helm as the commanding general of the third military zone of Manila.

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Sponsorship Speech for DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. and 47 Foreign Service Officers

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments of:
* Teodoro Locsin Jr.: Secretary, Department of Foreign Affairs
* 2 senior officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission Class I
* 4 senior officials promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission Class II
* 7 senior officials promoted to the rank of Career Ministers
* 16 officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officers Class I
* 18 officials promoted to the rank of Foreign Service Officers Class II

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Mr. Chairman, fellow members of the Commission on Appointments, a few minutes ago, this representation as Chairman of your Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing to deliberate on the ad interim appointment of the HON. TEODORO ‘TEDDY BOY’ LOCSIN, JR. as the Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Always the maverick, quick-witted, and acerbic — never dull and never ordinary – yun bang nang-iinsulto at nanlalait na masarap pa rin pakinggan at excited ka pang marinig ang mga susunod na sasabihin.

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Senate Adopts, Ratifies Bicam Report on the Proposed Measure for Rank Classification in the PNP

The Senate adopted and ratified a proposed measure providing for rank classification in the PNP, after Sen. Lacson delivered a sponsorship speech for the bicameral conference committee report.

Related:
Measure on PNP Rank Classification Tackled at the Bicameral Conference Committee Level
Sponsorship Speech for the Committee Report on Senate Bill 2031
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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report on Senate Bill 2031 (Rank Classification in the PNP)

Mr. President, distinguished colleagues of this august chamber, your Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs has the honor to report back for the consideration and approval of this body, Senate Bill 2031 under Committee Report No. 483, authored by this representation, Sen. Grace Poe, and Sen. Sonny Angara, entitled:

An Act Providing for the Rank Classification in the Philippine National Police, Amending for the Purpose Section 28 of RA 6975, as Amended, Otherwise Known as the Department of Interior and Local Government Act of 1990.

As a brief background, Sec. 28 of RA 6975 or the Department of Interior and Local Government Act of 1990 provides that the rank classification of the members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) are as follows: Director General; Deputy Director General; Director; Chief Superintendent; Senior Superintendent; Superintendent; Chief Inspector; Senior Inspector; Inspector; Senior Police Officer 4 or SPO4; SPO3; SPO2 and SPO1; and Police Officer 3 or PO3, PO2, and PO1.

Related: Senate Bill 1869, An Act Providing for Rank Classification in the PNP
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Sponsorship Speech for PH Ambassador Ma. Hellen de la Vega and 38 Foreign Service Officers

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Sen. Lacson took up the appointments of:
* Ma. Hellen de la Vega: Ambassador to Australia with concurrent jurisdiction over Nauru, Vanuatu and Tuvalu
* 7 officials appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission Class I
* 10 officials appointed to the rank of Chief of Mission Class II
* 15 officers appointed to the rank of Career Ministers
* 6 officers appointed to the rank of Foreign Service Officers I

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of AMBASSADOR MA. HELLEN MARIANO BARBER DE LA VEGA as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Commonwealth of Australia with concurrent jurisdiction over the Republic of Nauru, the Republic of Vanuatu and Tuvalu.

We likewise deliberated on the ad interim appointments of 38 Senior Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs. Of the 38, seven officials have been promoted to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class I; 10 to the rank of Chief of Mission, Class II; 15 officers to the rank of Career Minister; and six to the rank of Foreign Service Officer I.

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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report on Senate Bill 1898 (Transferring Police Recruits’ Training to PNP)

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Mr. President, at the outset, let me state here and now: there is something unique in this piece of legislation. There are two most unlikely people in the world to become one and united in pushing for its immediate passage: Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, the principal author; and President Rodrigo Duterte, who personally conveyed through the Senate President, Sen. Vicente “Tito” Sotto III, and the chairman of the House Committee on Public Order, Rep. Romeo Acop, that I give priority in sponsoring this measure. For a moment Mr. President, I toyed with the idea to have this picture PhotoShopped parang magka-holding hands sila, pero baka pareho sila magalit at mademanda pa ako.

It may be worth mentioning that Congressman Acop agreed to adopt the Senate version once we approve it on third reading.

For these reasons and more, it may be enough to just go through the motion of having this bill approved on second reading the soonest possible time.

Related: At a Glance: Senate Bill 1898, Placing the Training of Police Recruits Under the PNP
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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors Sulpicio Confiado and Akmad Sakkam

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Mr. Chairman… this Representation, as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing yesterday morning to deliberate on the nominations of two Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Related: More photos at the CA’s confirmation hearings

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Sponsorship Speech for Manuel Antonio Teehankee as PH Representative to the WTO

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of ATTY.  MANUEL ANTONIO JAVIER TEEHANKEE as Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.

This committee, after deliberating on his qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that he is fit and qualified to be in the post where he has been nominated, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary his nomination for the consent of this body.

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Sponsorship Speech for the Philippine Identification System (National ID) Bill

To reward, not to punish; to make life easy, not difficult.

Mr. President, distinguished members of this august chamber, I have the honor to report on the floor Senate Bill No. 1738, entitled “An Act Establishing the Philippine Identification System,” as embodied in Committee Report No. 277.

Related:
At a Glance: The Philippine ID System (National ID)
Ping: Isang ID lang para mabilis ang transaksiyon
Lacson seeks easier transactions, better fight vs crime with National ID bill

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Confirmation Hearing for Senior AFP Officers

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At the Commission on Appointments’ plenary session, Sen. Lacson delivered co-sponsorship speeches for the confirmation of Sen. Lorna Regina Legarda (PAF reserve colonel) and Rep. Roy Loyola (PA reserve colonel).

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Sponsorship Speech for New PH Ambassadors and Foreign Service Officer

The CA Committee on Foreign Affairs, chaired by Sen. Lacson, took up the appointments of:
* Grace Relucio Princesa: Ambassador to Holy See with concurrent jurisdiction over Malta
* Frank Revil Cimafranca: Ambassador to the Hellenic Republic with concurrent jurisdiction over Cyprus
* Marichu Barredo Mauro: Ambassador to Brazil with concurrent jurisdiction over Colombia, Guyana, Suriname and Venezuela
* Hjayceelyn Mancenido Quintana: Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates
* Linglingay Fonacier Lacanlale: Ambassador to Argentina, with concurrent jurisdiction over Bolivia, Paraguay and Uruguay
* Cesar Lee Hiong Wee: Ambassador to Indonesia
* Ombra Jainal: Ambassador to the Czech Republic
* Rowena F. Mutia: Foreign Service Officer, Class IV

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of nine Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs – four of whom are Career Officers of the Department while the other five are political nominees – and one Foreign Service Officer.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their nominations for the consent of this body.

To this end, it is my honor and privilege to recommend that the Commission give its consent to the nominations of the following DFA Senior Officers, namely:

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Sponsorship Speech: Committee Report on the Fatal Hazing of Horacio ‘Atio’ Castillo III, and SB 1662 (Anti-Hazing Law of 2018)

Mr. President, sometime in September 2017, Horacio “Atio” Castillo III was offered the promise of mutual support and brotherhood by the Aegis Juris Fraternity not only during his tenure as a law student at the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Civil law, but also during the Bar review and even in his future practice of the legal profession.

Apart from the guarantees made known to him, Atio decided to join the fraternity with a specific goal in mind, to discover his real purpose in life. Little did he know that his search for purpose would cost him his own life.

Related:
At a Glance: Findings and Recommendations on the fatal hazing of Horacio Castillo III
Read: Committee Report 232, Findings/Recommendations on the hazing death of Atio Castillo
Read: Senate Bill 1662, strengthening the Anti-Hazing Law

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Sponsorship Speech for 4 Ambassadors at the Commission on Appointments

The CA’s foreign affairs committee chaired by Sen. Lacson deliberated on the nominations of four ambassadors:
* Jocelyn S. Batoon-Garcia: Ambassador to Norway with jurisdiction over Iceland, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden.
* Denis Yap Lepatan: Ambassador to Switzerland with jurisdiction over Liechtenstein.
* Eduardo Jose Atienza de Vega: Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg, Commission of the European Communities and the Council of the European Union.
* Demetrio Remedios Tuason: Ambassador to the United Mexican States, with jurisdiction over Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Dominican Republic, and Cuba.

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, this Representation, as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of four Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs, three of whom are career officers of the Department while one is a political nominee. Your committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in their posts where they are nominated and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent of the body.

It is therefore my honor and privilege to recommend that the Commission give its consent to the nomination of the following DFA Senior Officers, namely:

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Sponsorship Speech: Relocation of the Senate of the Philippines

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Mr. President, distinguished colleagues in this Upper Chamber of the 17th Congress, I have the distinct honor and privilege to report on the Senate floor PS Resolution 293 entitled “RESOLUTION CREATING AN AD HOC COMMITTEE TASKED TO CONDUCT A FEASIBILITY STUDY ON THE CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW SENATE BUILDING AND RELOCATION OF THE SENATE THERETO,” filed by Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian.

Related: At a Glance: The process of the Senate’s relocation

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Sen. Lacson Sponsors the 2018 Budgets of the CHR and OPAPP

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors Maria Cleofe Rayos Natividad and Joseph del Mar Yap

Mr. Chairman, this Representation, as Chairman of your Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nominations of two Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Department of Foreign Affairs, and thereafter ruled to recommend to the plenary their nominations for the consent of the body.

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Cebu City PNP: ‘Professionalism, excellence and heroism’

From the Cebu City PNP‘s Twitter account

Sponsorship Speech for Senate Resolution 478 (Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos of 2017)

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to present Resolution No. 478 entitled “Resolution Honoring and Commending the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos of 2017.

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Pagsalang sa Commission on Appointments ni ‘Babe’ Romualdez bilang Kinatawan ng PH sa US

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Sponsorship Speech for Jose Manuel ‘Babe’ Romualdez as Philippine Ambassador to the United States
Commission on Appointments, Aug. 23, 2017

Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided by this representation conducted a public hearing this morning to hear and deliberate on the nomination of Mr. Jose Manuel del Gallego Romualdez as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the United States of America, with concurrent jurisdiction over the Commonwealth of Jamaica, Republic of Haiti, Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Antigua and Bermuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, The Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and Grenadines, and Saint Lucia.

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Sponsorship Speech for the Committee Report on the Claims of SPO3 Arturo Lascañas

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to report on the Senate floor the result of the inquiry, in aid of legislation, conducted by the Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs on the Privilege Speech of Sen. Antonio F. Trillanes IV regarding the public confession of retired SPO3 Arturo Lascañas on the existence of the Davao Death Squad (DDS), as embodied in Committee Report No. 97.

Mr. President, one night in September 2015, an ailing man while undergoing dialysis in a hospital in Davao City, dreamt that the devil was inside his room. The dream seemed so real, he even had flashbacks on certain incidents of his life, particularly the times when he killed people. He recalled calling the name of Jesus and made a promise to serve His will from thereon. Thereafter, he found himself saved by a child-like image appearing from a bright light. He then woke up from his dream and became a renewed man. That was the story of the spiritual awakening of Mr. Arturo Lascañas.

More than a year later, or on October 3, 2016, the same man was summoned by the Senate committee on justice and human rights to testify under oath as to the alleged existence of and the President’s participation and involvement in the Davao Death Squad (DDS). Before proceeding, he took an oath before everyone present in this very hall and in front of the entire nation, invoking the name of God to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

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Sponsorship Speech for Committee Report 77 (Senate Bill 909, An Act Increasing the Penalties for Other Illegal Gambling Activities)

Mr. President, distinguished colleagues, I have the honor to report on the floor Senate Bill 909, authored by Hon. Sherwin Gatchalian and co-authored by the Hon. Joel Villanueva, entitled An Act Increasing the Penalties for Other Illegal Gambling Activities, amending for the Purpose RA 9287 entitled An Act Increasing the Penalties for Illegal Numbers Games, amending certain provisions of PD 1602 and for Other Purposes as embodied in Committee Report 77.

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Sponsorship Speech for DFA Sec. Alan Peter Cayetano, before the Commission of Appointments

Mr. Chairman, this morning, this Representation, being the Chairman of your Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over probably the shortest public hearing to recommend to this honorable commission to give its consent to the nomination of Senator Alan Peter S. Cayetano as the Secretary of Department of Foreign Affairs.

In the spirit of consistency, I will now deliver the shortest sponsorship speech. Thus, Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, it is my distinct honor and privilege to move that the Commission give its consent to the nomination of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano as Secretary of Department of Foreign Affairs.

I so move, Mr. Chairman.

*****

Sponsorship Speech for 3 Ambassadors and 2 Foreign Service Officers before the Commission on Appointments

Likewise, the Committee deliberated on the nominations of three Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, and the ad interim appointments of two Foreign Service Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Mr. Chairman, having evaluated their fitness and qualifications, your Committee ruled that the three nominees and two appointees possess all the fitness and qualifications to the positions which they were nominated or appointed.

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Sponsorship Speech for the Committee Report on the Killing of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr.

Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, this representation has the honor to report on the Senate floor the result of the inquiry, in aid of legislation, conducted jointly by the Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs and the Committee on Justice and Human Rights, into the killing of Mayor Rolando Espinosa, Sr. of Albuera Leyte, as embodied in Committee Report No. 46.

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Sponsorship Speech for Teodoro Locsin Jr. and 21 Career Officers of the DFA at the Commission of Appointments

Mr. Chairman, this representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided (over) a public hearing to deliberate on the nomination of MR. TEODORO LOPEZ LOCSIN, JR. as Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations and the ad interim appointments of 21 Career Officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs that were submitted to the Committee’s jurisdiction for its consideration. The Committee ruled that the nominee and all the appointees possess the fitness and qualification to perform their duties, and recommended that their nomination and appointments be submitted to the plenary for its confirmation.

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors at the Commission of Appointments

Mr. Presiding Officer, the distinguished Vice Chairman of the CA, your Committee on Foreign Affairs which I chair conducted a public hearing to deliberate on the nominations of four ambassadors that were submitted to the committee’s jurisdiction for its consideration. The Committee thereafter ruled that all the nominees possess the fitness and qualifications to perform their duties, and recommended that their nominations be submitted to the plenary for confirmation.

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