Lawmaker admits ‘huge pressure’ to favor RH bill

A lawmaker has admitted of receiving ‘huge pressure’ from Malacañang for him to favor the controversial reproductive health (RH) bill.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the lawmaker said it left him no choice because several projects for his district will be compromised.

“There will be projects for my district that will be compromised if I will not vote for the bill,” he said.

He said there is also a “threat” to hold the release of their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) if passage of the RH bill will be derailed.

On Monday, majority of the lawmakers voted viva voce for the termination of the debates on the RH measure, following their meeting with President Benigno Aquino III.  The end of the debates means the next battle is the period of amendments.

The House was originally scheduled to vote tomorrow but Aquino’s allies in Congress decided to hold the voting today at a caucus in Malacañang by Liberal Party leaders and members.

Fr. Melvin Castro of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – Episcopal Commission on Family and Life was saddened over the sudden turn of events.

“They break their own rules. They really forced it today,” Castro said. “It’s railroading. They’re destroying the very essence of democracy.”

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