The majority of the member of the Senate voted in favor of Bill 1418 also known as Bayanihan to Heal as One Act giving special powers to President Rodrigo Duterte to address the COVID-19 crisis in the Philippines.
Voting 19-1-0, lawmakers passed the said bill that would give Duterte at least 26 special powers.
However, only 12 senators who were at the plenary will be officially counted while the other who voted via phone call will still be on the records of the Senate.
The bill includes P200-B emergency subsidy for 18-M low-income families,
Each low-income household is expected to receive around P5,000 to P8,000 per month in the form of cash or food
“The exact amount is determined in proportion to the minimum wage of their respective region,” Senator Pia Cayetano, the main sponsor of the bill said.
The Congress also gave Duterte special powers to direct the operations of “privately-owned hospitals, medical and health facilities including passenger vessels and other establishments,” if necessary.
The President may also take over the operations of the said hospitals and establishments if they “unjustifiably refuse or signify that they are no longer capable of operating their enterprises” for COVID-19 response.
It also gives the government to hasten the procurement of items necessary in fighting the COVID-19 and goods needed by the Filipinos who were affected by the enhanced community quarantine.
They also added the “Special Risk Allowance” for health workers.
According to the bill, public and private health workers who will get infected by COVID-19 while on duty will be entitled to receive P100,000 from the government, while medical practitioners who lost their lives because of the virus will be given P1-M each.
The bill also mandates Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to shoulder the medical expenses of the practitioners if they got hospitalized because of the virus.
Here’s the list of the senators who participated in the vote both in the plenary and also via phone call.
The government will get the funds from Government-owned and controlled corporation to ensure that the P4.1-T budget of the government for 2020 would remain “intact”
- Senate President Vicente Sotto III
- Win Gatchalian
- Richard J. Gordon
- Panfilo Lacson
- Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa
- Manny Pacquiao
- Christopher “Bong” Go
- Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan
- Ralph Recto
- Cynthia Villar
- Sonny Angara
- Joel VIllanueva
- Juan Miguel Zubiri
- Pia Cayetano
- Lito Lapid
- Grace Poe
- Bong Revilla
- Francis Tolentino
- Nancy Binay
- Risa Hontiveros
Did not vote:
- Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III
- Franklin Drilon
- Leila De Lima
- Imee Marcos
President Duterte is expected to sign the bill as soon as possible.