Physical presence needed to vote – Pimentel to De Lima

May 23, 2017 - 9:50 AM
Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III: how could private citizens pull off mega smuggling of drugs through Cuistoms withour anyone in BOC knowing? PNA FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III reminded Senator Leila de Lima on Monday that her detention puts limits on what she can do as a legislator.

De Lima requested to participate in Senate sessions particularly in the deliberations of measures.

But Pimentel said the Senate rules require a member to be present to interpellate, debate and vote.

On the other hand, a lawmaker need not be present to file resolutions and bills.

“The rule of the Senate is your presence is required for you to vote. If you are under detention, you ask temporary permission to leave your detention place to vote,” Pimentel told reporters.

“… Detention says you accept the reality that if you (are) detained, you cannot do some things,” he added.

Nevertheless, he said the courts may decide on De Lima’s request.

De Lima’s legal team is studying legal options that may allow her to attend Senate sessions.

She is detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City on drug trafficking charges.