MANILA – Amid the issue on Visiting Forces Agreement abrogation, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go clarified Monday that there is no move from among senate members to unseat and replace Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd.
Reason for this is, Sen. Go said is the fact that majority of senators trust his leadership.
“The Senate is a collegial body. It is not composed of only one person. As far as I know, majority of the sitting senators still trust the leadership of Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto 3rd,” Go stressed.
It was gathered that the rumors of a possible Senate leadership shakeup arose after Sotto, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon and Sen. Panfilo Lacson questioned the abrogation of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) with the US without consulting the Senate.
In a separate report, Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo insisted that concurrence of the senate over the cancellation by Malacanang of the VFA is not needed or necessary.
As it is, Sotto and Drilon are set to file a petition with the Supreme Court before the week ends in their bid for final verdict whether a Senate concurrence is needed or not on the VFA abrogation.
“This decision (to abrogate the VFA) is in line with President Rodrigo Duterte’s independent foreign policy, a move which—as I have repeatedly expressed in my previous statements—I fully support,” Go said.
At the same time Go said he understands and respects the varied views of his fellow senators on President Duterte’s decision to terminate the VFA.
“We are a separate branch of government and it is the right of each senator to express his or her views. After all, we are a working democracy,” Go said.
“I, however, believe that the termination of the VFA is a chance for us to write a new and better chapter in Philippine–United States relations. We should now be able to renew our friendship, reaffirm our ties and resume cooperation as true co-equals.”
Go added that: “As to the leadership of the Senate, there is a smooth working relationship between the executive branch and the Senate headed by Senate President Tito Sotto 3rd. Despite some differences in opinion, the Senate as a whole has been very supportive of the legislative agenda of President Duterte.” (ia/sovereignph.com)