Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Wednesday rejected reports he voted for the measure seeking to declare Sept. 11 as a “Marcos Day” and a special non-working holiday in Ilocos Norte.
Gatchalian said he did not vote for the measure’s approval but merely moved to have the measure discussed by the Senate Committee on Local Government.
“Let me go straight to the point. I did not vote for the approval of the proposed Marcos Day in Ilocos Norte contrary to what some media organizations published,” Gatchalian said in a statement.
“I merely moved to have the bill, along with other local bills, tackled by the Local Government Committee in last Monday’s hearing, subjected to further study by the technical working group,” the senator said.
“The exact words that I said during the hearing were: I’m moving for an omnibus endorsement to the TWG to reconcile the different versions and also to request for position papers from the resource persons. I so move’,” he said.
Gatchalian said placing the bills under the TWG is not tantamount to approval of the measure.
“Approval of the bill takes place on the plenary floor with majority of the senators voting on the measure. Records of the proceedings can confirm that no ‘voting’ took place in the said hearing. I hope this clarifies the misleading news,” the lawmaker stressed.
Sen. Nancy Binay, earlier, also denied voting for the approval of the bill, saying she would not support any measure that backs “historical revisionism.”
According to Binay, she was no longer part of the discussions on the bill when the Senate Committee on Local Government, chaired by Sen. Francis Tolentino, took up the measure.
“I had to leave the hybrid hearing of the Senate committee on local government after the discussion on the re-districting of the province of Bulacan due to a prior commitment,” she said.
“Thus, I was no longer a part of the hearing when House Bill No. 7137 was tackled and discussed,” the lawmaker reiterated.
Party-list Akbayan group, led by Loretta “Etta” Rosales, had condemned the panel’s approval of the bill saying the committee “shamed and cheapened itself” by acting as a “Marcos deodorant to hide the stench of the dead dictator’s brutal rule.”