STUDY

House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez confirms that he has yet to file the Palace version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law at the House of Representatives.

So far onlyHouse Bill 92 by Deputy Speaker bai Sandra Sema, House Bill 6263 by Lanao del Sur rep. Mohamad Khalid Dimaporo and House Bill 6121 by Former President, now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo have been filed.

Sema’s version, according to its explanatory note, is the BBL authored by House Speaker Sonny Belmonte in the 16th Congress.

Malacanang transmitted the BBL version to the House months ago, but Alvarez said today,  “Ah, nasa amin na yung kopya. Merong iba’t-ibang version yung infinile nung mga congressman. Si Cong. Sema, yung ating deputy speaker, nag file din ng bill. Si Cong. Khalid Dimaporo nag file din. So far yun yung dalawang alam ko na …”

Alvarez says the different versions of the BBL will have to be consolidated with the Palace version that remains under study by his staff. “ Hindi pa yata, hindi pa. Ico-consolidate naman yun. Hindi pa. Actually nasa staff ko. Sabi ko pag-aralan tapos bigyan ako ng comments. And then, before I will file it. Ay gusto ko kung…wala namang problema sa akin kung ako ang magpa-file.”

Alvarez believes many of his colleagues are supportive of the bill, even as he attributed the delay to the prioritization of the House of the plenary deliberations on the 2018 budget. “Hindi naman kesa hindi umaandar. Meron nang mga…nasa committee level na yung mga ibang bills na na-file so ico-consolidate na lang dun sa version nung Palace.”

Under House Rules, no committee hearings can be held when the plenary is tackling the budget unless with the consent of the Committee on Rules.