The Senate national defense and security committee starts next week its first public hearing on the controversial ‘’red-tagging’’ by the military of entertainment celebrities and militant organizations.

lacson2 1 - Lacson committee to conduct public hearing on red-tagging issue
Senator Panfilo M. Lacson

This came after Senator Panfilo M. Lacson sought the opinion of Senate President Vicente Sotto III on his Senate Resolution 559.

The resolution was supposed to be read on first reading and might be referred to Lacson’s committee when the Senate resumes plenary session on November 9.

Lacson said Sotto had told him that the Senate, in the exercise of its oversight function, could waive the first reading phase on Senate Resolution 559.

Thus, the Lacson committee can now conduct its public hearing without waiting for both the Senate and the House of Representatives formally resuming their plenary sessions on November 9 as scheduled.  

Invited to the public hearing are the leaderships of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and defense department; Gabriela, a militant organization; and other leftist groups.

Entertainment celebrities were not invited as the might prove to be distractions during the public hearing, Lacson said.   

Lacson earlier said that the public hearing on his resolution might take place three days after the resolution has been read on the Senate floor when the Upper House resumes plenary session on November 9.

This is referred to as ‘’first reading.’’

In legislative parlance, public hearings are conducted on second reading after which a committee report is submitted for plenary debate.

If approved, the measure is deemed to have passed second reading, and later passed on third and final reading.        

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives then meet in bicameral conference committee to iron out the differing provisions of their bills. After that, an enrolled bill  is sent to the President for approval or veto.

READ MORE: Senate panel to probe red-tagging of celebs in November

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