The 1.2 million votes that party-list elect Buhay Hayaang Yumabong (Buhay) got in the May 13 polls won’t guarantee support for a repeal of the Reproductive Health (RH) Law, a House leader said Saturday.
House Deputy Majority Leader Romero Quimbo of Marikina made the pronouncement in light of announcement made by Buhay party-list elect Rep. Lito Atienza that their group will move to amend the RH Law.
The RH law, enacted into law this year despite staunch opposition from the Catholic Church, mandates the state to provide natural and artificial family planning services to families, including condoms, pills and intrauterine devices. The Aquino administration marked the measure as a priority, and sees it as a law that would enable Filipino families to bear children that they can raise in a humane way.
Just like the Catholic Church, Buhay opposes the RH law.
“Every member of Congress is entitled to pursue their agenda. But like with any other initiative, it will have to go through the approval of the majority,” Quimbo said in a text message.
When Congress voted for the passage of the RH law, 113 House members voted in favor of the measure while only 79 voted against.
“Each House member has an equal vote or mandate in Congress, regardless of the votes they get during the polls. That is how democracy works,” Quimbo, a lawyer, pointed out.
The RH has been pending before Congress for 14 years before it passed into law.
Quimbo, a member of the ruling Liberal Party chaired by President Benigno Aquino 3rd, voted for the passage of the RH law.
Llanesca T. Panti