MANILA - Senator Jinggoy Estrada may be detained on plunder and graft charges but he still wants to do his work as a senator while inside Camp Crame.
Through his legal counsel Sabino Acut, Jr., Sen. Estrada asked the justices of the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division during the continuation of the hearing regarding his bail petition that he be allowed to perform his legislative function, particularly to preside over committee hearings in performance of his official capacity as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources Development.
The Sandiganbayan asked the lawyers to submit a formal motion on the request within 5 days.
Estrada is currently facing plunder and graft charges before the anti-graft court in connection with the P10 billion pork barrel scam.
The Senate leadership has deferred the implementation of a suspension order issued by the Sandiganbayan against Estrada pending resolution of his motion for reconsideration.
Estrada said committee hearings could be done inside the common area of the detention facility, as there is enough space to accommodate government officials and other stakeholders which may be called upon to attend as resource persons.
He noted Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV was able to hold committee meetings in Camp Crame while he was detained on coup charges.
Estrada has so far introduced the following bills: Increasing the night shift differential rate for workers; Ensuring occupational health and safety of BPO workers; Institutionalizing a National Employment Facilitation Service Network for Persons with Disability; Penalizing No Permit-No Exam policy of schools, among others.
The younger Estrada is also working on a bill which seeks to improve the inhuman condition of penal systems and heavy congestion of our jails.