Category Archives: Discuss-a-Bill

Legalize Marijuana in the Philippines?

Marijuana is legal in some US states. In the Philippines, as the law stands today, marijuana is illegal. It is a dangerous drug and the selling/use of marijuana is a criminal offense. Soon it would be completely legal to use marijuana in the Philippines. That is, if Congress passes a proposed bill and President Benigno Aquino signs it into law.   Continue reading

Anti-Selfie Bill or Protection Against Personal Intrusion

News articles label a proposed law as “anti-selfie” bill. The label, however, is not accurate. The proposal currently pending at the House of Representatives does not prohibit selfies per se — it declares illegal the act of taking photos, among others, of other people for commercial purposes. But it can seriously collide with ubiquitous recording technology and can adversely affect growing sectors like citizen journalism, blogging and online social networks. It is, therefore, important to understand what others call the “anti-selfie” bill and what it seeks to prevent. Read the full text below and help us discuss the pros and cons of this proposed law (use the comment section below). Continue reading

Discuss the Bus Drivers and Conductors Compensation Act (HB 3370)

In response to the increasing incidents of road accidents involving buses, House Bill No. 3370 was filed in Congress. It provides, among others, for a maximum 8 hours of work and a compulsory monthly salary for bus drivers and conductors. This is in lieu of the existing commission basis. Continue reading

Protecting the Whistleblowers

Government officials and employees, including the President himself, acknowledge that graft and corruption is rampant in government. “Graft and corruption become very prevalent in the country making the Philippines as one of the most corrupt countries in Asia.” This acknowledgment is contained in Senate Bill 1063, filed by Senator Manny Villar, proposing a “Whistleblower Act of 2010”. Graft and corruption, according to the Villar Bill, “will be lessened if not eradicated”. Continue reading

Right of Reply: Discussing SB 2150 and HB 3306

There are existing proposals in both chambers for a right of reply. In essence, the right of reply means that all persons who are accused directly or indirectly of committing or having committed or of intending to commit any crime or offense defined by law or are criticized by innuendo, suggestion or rumor for any lapse in behavior in public or private life shall have the right to reply to the charges published or printed in newspapers, magazines, newsletters or publications circulated commercially or for free, or to criticisms aired or broadcast over radio, television, websites, or through any electronic device. Continue reading

Discussion: Proposed Reproductive Health and Population Development Act of 2008

You may be aware that there’s a growing debate on the proposed “Reproductive Health and Population Development Act of 2008” filed in the House of Representatives. Rep. Edcel Lagman as the principal sponsor (the Fact Sheet and the Explanatory Note to House Bill No. 17, substituted by HB 5043, is here. See also updated bill, House Bill 4244 and the general discussion on RH Bill). Continue reading

Allowing Absolute Divorce in the Philippines

Divorce is a controversial topic, except that it’s often discussed with hushed voices. Many are just waiting for the right opportunity to end their respective marriages, and the reasons are diverse — physical abuse (against the spouse and/or the children), sexual infidelity, irreconcilable differences and conflicting personalities, gross irresponsibility, loss (and transfer) of affection, among others. Unfortunately, these grounds are not enough to severe the marital bond through annulment. In lieu of divorce, married persons resort to annulment and according (“OSG Alarmed By Rising Marriage Annulment Cases“) to the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), there is an alarming increase in the number of annulment cases in the Philippines. The number of annulment cases filed in courts, which never breached the 7,000-mark prior to 2006, rose to 7,138 (2006) and 7,753 (2007). Continue reading