MAGANES: What happened to the Reproductive Health Bill?

May 12, 2012 at 6:10 pm Leave a comment

Blamed it to the incessant hearings on the impeachment case of Chief Justice Renato Corona, the Reproductive Health Bill which was certified by President Benigno S. Aquino III as one of the priority bills in 2010 under his administration is gathering dusts and cobwebs in the House of Representatives.

After many months of debates and public hearings, the RH Bill has not moved a bit as it was being parried off by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church. Will it go to the dustbin? Will it ever appeal to the majority of the members of the House of Representatives?

Lately, Philippines ranked 8th in the world with highest number of teenage pregnancies. This was disclosed by the United Nations and thus needs a thorough study. The RH Bill is an answer to that predicament we are facing. Teenagers nowadays are promiscuous. They engage in premarital sex without thinking of its repercussions and effects. The core of the RH Bill is sex education and on this I could not understand why our brothers in the Church could not accept the fact that lifestyles are changing. They argued that RH is counter- productive and pro-abortion.

There were studies already to that effect. Other countries in the world have already passed their RH law and yet, we as a third world country are still dilly-dallying on its passage.

What makes it nauseating is that our solons seemed to be afraid at the hierarchy of the Church. What are they afraid of? Has this something to do with faith or with politics?

The prime arm of the Church is the issue on excommunication. The Catholic solons are afraid to be excommunicated from their parishes. Second, the Church will not support their candidacies in 2013 if they are pro-RH Bill.

But that was the argument of yore. People now are more understanding. Long before the idea for a RH bill, many Catholic couples are already using contraceptive methods. We have already the IUDs, the condoms, the pills and even condoms that are now available in the market. The RH Bill will just reinforce these methods with responsible parenthood and sex education in elementary grades.

I doff my hat off to 5th District Rep. Kimi S. Cojuangco who has the courage to defy the Church. When the issue was still that hot, she conducted fora in universities and even held a motorcade to inform the people about the importance f the motorcade.

“Don’t be hypocrites,” she told the priests in one of the fora she attended.

Last May 4 I had the chance to meet Rep. Cojuangco during the birthday of Urdaneta City Mayor Bobom Perez. There I asked her what happened to her pet RH Bill. She said it is still moving in the House of Representatives.

“It was overtaken by many events otherwise the Bill could have already reached its momentum in the plenary,” she told me.

Rep. Kimi assured me that once the Congress will open on May 7, she will again push for the discussion of the RH Bill. She whispered to me her strategy for the other solons to vote for its passage, but warned me “off-the record”.

Well I just hope Madam Kimi that your strategy will really work in the House of Representatives. I also hope that its passage will be expedited like the impeachment of CJ Corona.

Oh, why do the House of Representatives cannot do ala Corona’s impeachment styles in the passage of bills? If they could manipulate a procedure that has something to do with honor and integrity of a person, then they too can manipulate bills that are of importance to the Filipino people.

Anyway, we just wait and see. Let us cross our fingers that our solons will not keep on “noynoying” in their chambers.

Through this corner, may I take this opportunity to greet Urdaneta City Mayor Amadeo Gregorio “Bobom” Perez IV who just celebrated his 50th birthday last May 4 at the UCU Gymnasium. Sir, happy birthday and more power.

I would also like to convey my sympathy and condolences to the families of the following for their untimely demise: Cendaña and Bravo families of Urdaneta City for the loss of Segundo “Don” Bravo, a media colleague; Mondala and Joaquin families for the passing away of Emerita J. Espe of San Blas, Villasis, Pangasinan and to the Wagayen family of Zone I, Villasis, Pangasinan for the passing away Trinidad M. Wagayen.

(For comments email me at

Entry filed under: News.

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