Death penalty opponents win a delay at House

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 31 2017 06:34 PM

MANILA — Lawmakers opposing the revival of the death penalty successfully delayed on Tuesday the sponsorship of the bill at the House plenary.

Justice committee chairman Rey Umali confirmed to ABS-CBN News in a phone call that the sponsorship has been moved to Wednesday.

The sponsorship was deferred when Buhay Party list Rep. Lito Atienza disputed the roll call by presiding officer Representative Miro Quimbo.


Quimbo declared a quorum, with 224 responses to the Congress roll call, but Atienza claimed only 152 lawmakers were present.

According to floor leader Arthur Defensor, the counting process made use of a presumption of regularity, which means those on the floor and in the vicinity of the session hall were included.

Atienza petitioned for a recount but was overruled.

Afterward, Akbayan Representative Tom Villarin asked to deliver a privilege speech on the tuna industry. He was given 5 minutes.

Earlier, more detractors of the death penalty gathered outside the Batasang Pambansa and proceeded to the plenary to watch the start of deliberations, including human rights coalition iDEFEND and the Association of Major Religious Superiors in the Philippines.