Senate wants to arrest Michael Yang, but there's a problem...

The Senate is now in a quandary over how to arrest former presidential adviser Michael Yang.

Former presidential economic adviser Michael Yang is assisted by an interpreter as he attends on September 10, 2021 the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee's fifth hearing on the Department of Health's disbursement of its COVID-19 funds. (Screencapture from Senate livestream/YouTube)

Yang was again cited for contempt by the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee Friday, September 10, for supposedly being evasive in answering the senators' questions about his links to Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation, and the firm's provision of more than P8 billion in personal protective equipment (PPEs) and other medical supplies to the Department of Health (DOH).

They found Yang "lying" when Pharmally president Huang Tzu Yen admitted that the businessman indeed funded some of their purchases to their suppliers.

For this reason, the Senate panel moved for the issuance of another arrest warrant against him.

But Senate President Vicente Sotto admitted a dilemma with arresting Yang.

Yang attended the Blue Ribbon Committee hearing virtually from a hotel in Davao City, which means personnel of the Senate's Office of the Sergeant-at-Arms (OSAA) would have to travel to take him into chamber's custody.

"'Yon ang problema. Diskarte ng OSAA (That's the problem. It depends on how the OSAA will do it)," Sotto told reporters Friday night.

As for Pharmally's director Linconn Ong, who was likewise ordered arrested for his vague responses on their corporation's financial capacity, the Senate committee agreed to just send members of the OSAA to his residence and place him under house arrest.

Ong had disclosed to senators that he has COVID-19.

Senator Richard Gordon, committee chairman, said an ambulance will also be provided by the Senate in case his condition worsens.

The Senate panel suspended Friday's hearing of over seven hours in consideration of Ong.