PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is expected to certify as urgent the proposed Bayanihan to Recover as One Act or Bayanihan 2, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque announced on Thursday, July 23, 2020.

The measure grants the President the power to realign funds and enhance the government’s response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) crisis, including procurement of medical supplies, subsidy for low-income families and other sectors hit by the pandemic.

“Pagdating naman po doon sa sasabihin ni Presidente, siguro hintayin nalang natin talagang hindi ko po pangungunahan ang Presidente pero nandiyan na rin po ang Bayanihan 2 na sigurado ako ice-certify as urgent,” Roque said.

“’Iyong Bayanihan 2 naman po ay isa yan sa malakas na sandata natin na gagamitin natin para tayo naman po ay makabangon dito sa aberya ng Covid,” he added.

The first Bayanihan law, Bayanihan to Heal As One Act or Republic Act 11469, expired on June 25, 2020.

The Senate adjourned on June 4, having approved the Bayanihan 2 bill only on second reading.

As a rule, there should be at least three days between the passing of a bill on second and third reading.

Senate Bill No. 1564, which was sponsored by Senator Juan Edgardo Angara, features a P140 billion worth of economic recovery interventions in the country.

Members of the House of Representatives have yet to tackle the counterpart bill of Bayanihan 2 in the plenary.

Malacañang earlier planned to call for a special session of Congress to pass the Bayanihan 2 measure.

This plan was dropped as the measure can be discussed once Congress resumes its sessions on Monday, July 27. (SunStar Philippines)