MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Franklin Drilon wants active involvement of the Senate in the ongoing talks between the Philippines-US deal.
In a statement on Friday, Drilon said he wants to assure the public that any agreement the government will enter shall be in accordance with the Constitution.
The deal titled as the “Framework Agreement between the Philippines and the United States on the Increased Rotational Presence or Enhanced Defense Co-operation” will improve the rotational presence of the USA troops in the Philippines.
Moreover, this pact will deploy US military assets for disaster and maritime security operations.
However, this PhL-US agreement is also seen as a counterpart effort behind China’s aggression over the China-PhL dispute on the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
Critics react that through this pact, the Philippines might be used as a “launching pad” for more intense military operations by the US against terrorists.
“I will examine the outcome of the negotiations to see to it that it will not infringe on the lives of our people and their guaranteed rights,” Drilon said.
The Senate has the power to ratify treaties with foreign governments, but since this new deal is said to be an executive agreement, Drilon stated that Senate ratification will not be required as long as limitations under the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) and the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) will be respected.
Kathleen Ave L. Crucillo
Leyte Normal University