Senate opens 3rd regular session ahead of Duterte’s final SONA

Senate President Vicente Sotto III (Screengrab from Senate of the Philippines livestream)

MANILA, Philippines — The Senate on Monday opened its third regular session of the 18th Congress ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte’s final State of the Nation Address (SONA) later within the day.

The Senate and the House of Representatives will maintain a joint session at 4 p.m. on the Batasang Pambansa to listen to Duterte’s tackle to the nation.

In earlier years, senators would open their session within the morning earlier than touring from the Senate constructing in Pasay City to the Batasang Pambansa, the headquarters of the House of Representatives, in Quezon City.
However, solely eight senators from the bulk bloc will bodily witness Duterte ship his SONA resulting from restrictions posed by the raging COVID-19 pandemic.
Priority measures
In its third regular session, the Senate seeks to prioritize the passage of a number of measures.
These embrace amendments to the Foreign Investment Acts (FIA), amendments to the Public Service Act (PSA), the proposed Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery (GUIDE) and the proposed Department of Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act.
The newest tax reform packages of the Duterte administration—the Passive Income Tax and Valuation Reform invoice, the Financial Intermediary Tax Act (PIFITA), the proposed Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines (VIP) and the proposed Rural Agricultural and Fisheries Development Financing System Act (Agri-Agra) are additionally among the many precedence payments.
Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri additionally earlier mentioned that the higher chamber will work on passing the Bureau of Fire Protection modernization invoice, after the bicameral model was scrapped by the Senate resulting from a provision arming firemen.
The invoice rising the statutory rape age, the proposed Military and Uniformed Personnel Insurance Fund Act, the proposed Philippine Center for Disease Control and Prevention Act, in addition to the proposed Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Extension Law and presumably the third Bayanihan regulation are additionally seen to be handed by the Senate.
Like final 12 months, guests and friends weren’t allowed contained in the Senate premises resulting from strict well being protocols and laws.

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