Sen. Pia to chair new senate committee

Published July 3, 2019, 6:00 PM

by Martin Sadongdong & Antonio Colina

By Vanne Elaine Terrazola 

The Senate is set to create a new committee that will monitor the government’s sustainable development programs.

Pia Cayetano

This will be chaired by returning Senator Pia Cayetano.

Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri on Wednesday said this was agreed upon by Senate President Vicente Sotto III, him, and the senators endorsed by the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) in a meeting Tuesday night.

The Committee on Sustainable Development will serve as an oversight to the government’s compliance to the Millenium Development Goals, which seeks to eradicate poverty.

“Maganda ito (This is good) because this will encompass health, education and social services…It’s necessary [committee]. It coordinates all these millenium development goals and we’ll see if it’s being implemented or being achieved,” Zubiri said.

He is confident other majority bloc senators will agree to the plan.

He said the Senate will amend its rules in the opening of the 18th Congress to create the said panel.

Earlier, it was reported that the Senate Committee on Education will likewise be divided into two panels — the basic education and tertiary education — to accommodate Senators Sherwin Gatchalian and Joel Villanueva.

Zubiri admitted that the sustainable development committee is also an “accommodation” for Cayetano, who wants to handle a single education committee.

The meeting with HNP-backed senators Tuesday, he said, was “just to make sure that the committees that they are asking will be given to them and that there is no problem.”

“Almost all of them are happy with the committees that they are getting,” he said.