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GENEVA IPU 2020

Drilon sees deferment of inter-parliamentary meet due to COVID-19


Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon believes the worldwide threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) will take a toll on the international assembly of parliamentarians set next month in Geneva, Switzerland.

In a Dobol B sa News TV interview aired on GMA News TV, Drilon said he does not see the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) assembly taking place in April, considering that many of the attendees are coming from countries infected with COVID-19.

"Sa palagay ko, 'yan ay hindi matutuloy dahil mahigit sa isang libong parliamentarians at staff nila ay nagtitipon sa Geneva. Maraming parliamentarians ang apektado, Iran, Italy, China, Japan," he said.

"So kung itutuloy man nila, sa palagay ko walang pupunta," he added.

Drilon said he is the representative of the Philippine Senate to the assembly. Aside from him, other senators in the IPU assembly include Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto, Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senators Panfilo Lacson, Sonny Angara, Joel Villanueva, Sherwin Gatchalian, Ronald dela Rosa, Imee Marcos, and Nancy Binay.

Earlier, Sotto said the would skip the IPU assembly, even as he is supposed to chair the Asia-Pacific Group in during the event.

"Di ko alam sa iba, pero sa akin at saka mga kasama ko na supposedly a-attend sa IPU sa Switzerland ako ay nagpasabi na 'wag muna, meron na rin sa Europe eh ang dami nga, ang bilis kumalat sa Europe," he said.

"Nagpasabi na ako, nagpasabi ako na kung tatanungin niyo ako mas gusto ko na i-postpone natin ito kasi nagtatanong na sila kasi sila mismo parang gusto na nila i-cancel," he added. —Erwin Colcol/LBG, GMA News