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Villar commits to help in resolving chairmanship issues

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By Vanne Elaine Terrazola

Senator Cynthia Villar has committed to help in resolving the Senate majority’s problem on committee chairmanships.

Sen. Cynthia Villar (Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sen. Cynthia Villar
(Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

This was according to Senate President Vicente Sotto III, who bared on Wednesday that he has already talked to Villar.

Villar, to recall, ditched the meeting of incoming members of the 18th Congress Senate supermajority last June 5 amid the dispute on Senate committees.

There were speculations that she was pushed to replace Sotto as the Senate president should neophyte senators fail to get their preferred committees. Villar did not sign the draft resolution maintaining Sotto’s leadership in the next Congress, fearing that her partymates senators-elect Pia Cayetano and Imee Marcos would be left out.

Sotto said he had a “fruitful” talk with Villar over the phone. Their discussion, he said, focused on the chairmanships and Villar’s concerns for her Nacionalista Party allies.

“She is helping to settle some issues on chairmanships,” Sotto told reporters.

The Senate chief, on the other hand, said they were not able to discuss the draft resolution earlier supported by 14 incumbent majority bloc senators sans Villar.

But while Villar did not assure her support for his continued leadership, Sotto said the 2013 senatorial race frontrunner “already intimated to me that she will retain her committees.”

Meanwhile, Senator Grace Poe on Thursday opted to keep mum about her supposed plan to give up her chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Public Information and Mass Media to newly-elected senators.

Marcos and former senator Ramon Revilla Jr. had expressed intention to lead the said panel. Sotto earlier said Poe is willing to give the committee and hold the Senate banks committee instead.

“Ayoko munang magsalita ng committee chairmanships, ‘pag natapos na lang ito. Magbobotohan naman sa floor,” she told reporters in an interview in Bulacan.

“Basta hindi final ‘yan, may mga iniisip ako kung saan tayo makakatulong,” she added.

What’s sure is that Poe will continue to handle the Senate public services committee

“Nais kong ipagpatuloy diyan ang aking trabaho sapagkat marami tayong nasimulan, maraming mga isyu pagdating sa mga pasahero, lalung-lalo na ang mga driver na naghahanap-buhay, ayaw naman nating basta-bastang bitawan,” she explained.

Sotto, following their June 5 meeting, said the issue on committee chairmanship is 95 percent resolved.

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