PARLIAMENT MEETS CONGRESS. Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) Parliament officials headed by Speaker Atty. Pangalian M. Balindong pay virtual courtesy call today, December 09, 2020 to newly installed Philippine House of Representatives Speaker Lord Allan Velasco. (NUAli, Publication and Media Relations Division, BTA Parliament)
COTABATO CITY — The Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) Parliament paid a virtual courtesy call today, December 09, 2020, to newly installed Philippine House of Representatives Speaker Lord Allan Velasco in a virtual meeting held at the BTA Extension Office and Speaker Velasco’s office.
In his message, Parliament Speaker Atty. Pangalian M. Balindong said on behalf of the Bangsamoro Parliament, ‘it is my honor to congratulate you on your election as Speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives’.
“Let me recall that as part of the intergovernmental relations board, provided under the Bangsamoro Organic Law, the Philippine Congress-Bangsamoro Parliament (PCPB) Forum shall be constituted by both Houses of Congress for purposes of cooperation and coordination of legislative initiatives. Pursuant to Senate concurrent Resolution No.5, this was referred to the House of Representatives’ Committee on Rules,” Balindong said.
Balindong stressed the BTA Parliament enacted Resolution No. 63 “Urging the Speaker of the Bangsamoro Parliament to designate delegates to the Philippine Congress – Bangsamoro Parliament Forum”.
“The delegation from the Bangsamoro Parliament are now ready to meet and work with our counterpart delegates in the Philippine Congress with full cooperation and coordination,” the Speaker emphasized.
Velasco, on the other hand, expressed his warm greetings to the Parliament and replied that at present the Congress is currently busy with the 2021 ‘budget’.
“Most probably, early next year as we are still very busy in finishing the budget for 2021. We can see at possible date on the first quarter of next year as to the PCPB forum. I would like to express my gratitude to the BTA Parliament for all the works that you have been doing. See you soon in the forum, hopefully by next year,” Velasco said.
In addition, Deputy Speaker Hatimil Hassan introduced the members of the Bangsamoro Parliament to the PCBP forum.
Extension of Transition Period
Furthermore, Velasco mentioned to the Parliament officials about the issue on the extension of elections in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
MP Atty. Jose Lorena shared the BTA Parliament passed Resolution No. 332, “Urging the House of Representatives and the Senate of the Philippines to extend the Bangsamoro transition period from year 2022 to 2025”.
Lorena was one of the principal authors of said resolution.
“This is to provide the BTA with sufficient time to continue in performing its powers and functions, and complete its mandate,” Lorena said.
Lorena also cited how the ongoing pandemic has affected the BTA Parliament in general, following months of community quarantines.
“While the BTA has taken significant strides in its service as the interim government in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region, the sheer weight of its mandate and the amount of work that it entails, coupled with shortfalls in resources and placed in the context of continued security threats, and further complicated by the effects of a lingering pandemic, the 3-year transition period is simply not enough to accomplish its targets,” the resolution said.
In this regard, Velasco replied that ‘definitely, the delays caused by Covid-19 would be also taken into consideration’.
Other BTA officials in attendance during the activity were Deputy Speaker Atty. Omar Yasser C. Sema, Majority Floor Leader Atty. Lanang T. Ali, Jr., Deputy Majority Leaders Atty. Raissa Jajurie and Khadafeh Mangudadatu, Minority Floor Leader Atty. Laisa Masuhud Alamia, Members of Parliament Eduard Guerra, Ubaida Pacasem, Rasul Esmael, Nabil Tan and Atty. Paisalin Tago.
Meanwhile, Velasco was elected as House Speaker on October 12, 2020 during a gathering of 186 representatives held at Celebrity Sports Complex in Quezon City.
On October 13, Velasco entered the Batasang Pambansa’s plenary hall for the first time following a remote session which elected him as new Speaker of the House. Around 186 lawmakers voted to ratify Velasco’s election as Speaker during the plenary proceedings, the same number of legislators who voted to elect him as Speaker the day before. (GALao, Publication and Media Relations Division, BTA Parliament)
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