“Chief Architect daw ng Foreign Policy kaya walang say si VP o ang Senado…..so kung ang foreign policy natin sa China ay ‘aw aw aw’ ibig sabihin lahat tayo ‘aw aw aw’ din?” Senator Kiko Pangilinan said in a Twitter post February 16.
This is after President Rodrigo Duterte responded to statements made by Vice President Leni Robredo and Senator Ping Lacson regarding the President’s remarks asking the Unites States to pay if it wants the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) to stay in effect.
“Ito naman si Robredo abogado, I can forgive Lacson because he is not – na they should look at the Constitution. The Constitution of the Philippines provides that the foreign relations or foreign policy is vested in the president alone,” President Duterte said on February 15 in his address to nation.
“Kung ano ang policy gusto niyang ipalabas for the Philippines is vested in the president and not with the senators or the vice president. So at least ‘yong sabi nila na extortion, well, I can forgive Robredo. Every time she opens her mouth, talagang she forgets that she’s a lawyer, and being a lawyer, she should know that the Constitution says that that is my function. It is not their function,” President Duterte said.
“I don’t know if it’s a pretended ignorance kay Lacson. But itong kay Robredo, sabi ko nga, ma’am, kung ikaw ang presidente, hindi mo alam ang trabaho mo, huwag ka na lang mag – eh dapat alam mo ‘yan, abogado ka – that you should not be opening your mouth while we are negotiating because maraming kasalanan ang Amerika sa atin,” he added.
In response to President Duterte’s statement, Senator Lacson said in a Twitter post, “Mr President, read the 1987 Constitution. A senator has something to do with international agreements: Article VII SECTION 21. No treaty or international agreement shall be valid and effective unless concurred in by at least two-thirds of all the Members of the Senate.”