January 19, 2010
The Senate finally released on Monday night the official report of the committee of the whole on its investigation of the C-5 road extension project after garnering the required 12 signatures to bring the report in the plenary.
Senator Francis ‘Kiko’ Pangilinan completed the majority signatures after withdrawing his signature from a resolution supporting the innocence of senator Manny Villar in the construction of the controversial C-5 extension road.
”The LP today took an official party stand on the issue of the committee report of the committee of the whole. It is the decision of the party leadership that regardless of whether we believe in the guilt or innocence of Sen. Villar, at the very least, the proponents of the report should be allowed to present their findings in the plenary,” Pangilinan said in a text message.
”Senators can then vote either for or against the findings at the appropriate time. As a member of the LP, we will abide by the Party decision and allow for the report to be presented in plenary,” he added.
Aside from Pangilinan, Senate Pro Tempore President Jinggoy Estrada also withdrew from the resolution and instead supported the presentation of the committee report on the floor.
The 12 signatories include senators Panfilo Lacson, Mar Roxas, Noynoy Aquino, Chiz Escudero, Richard Gordon, Rodolfo Biazon, Jamby Madrigal, Edgardo Angara, Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri and Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile who is the chairman of the Senate committee of the whole.
The committee report will be presented in the plenary on Tuesday where the senators will vote whether to censure Villar after reportedly finding him to have engaged in improper and unethical conduct in the construction of the C-5 road extension project.
According to reports, Villar’s involvement in the controversial project in Paranaque and Las Pinas made the Filipino suffer the total amount of P6.22 billion. The report demand the return of the money.
Madrigal filed the ethical complaints, accusing Villar, the presidential candidate of the Nacionalista Party, of being behind the double insertion of P200 million in the 2008 national for the project.
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