Members of the House Minority Bloc on Tuesday demanded the removal of Communications Undersecretary Lorraine Marie Badoy from her position following her "terrorist-tagging" remarks against members of the Makabayan Bloc.
The call is covered in a manifesto read by Minority Leader Bienvenido Abante Jr. during the House plenary deliberations on the proposed 2021 budget of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO).
According to the manifesto, which was signed by 21 members of the minority bloc, Badoy "does not uphold the basic Filipino core values and deliberately disrespects elected public officials who were mandated to serve their constituencies."
"These relentless attacks of USec. Badoy through her social media platforms, which even incited her followers to issue threats of harm against sitting members of the House, are not acceptable to the Minority, and we will not take it in stride or sitting down," it added.
The lawmakers demanded PCOO and its officials take down all its social and other media posts disrespecting and slandering Makabayan Bloc members, and that the agency issue a public apology for this "grave misconduct."
"Finally, [we demand] the removal of Usec. Badoy from her post, as she does not embody the proper conduct of a civil servant," they said.
"Usec. Badoy’s malicious terrorist tagging of the Makabayan bloc Representatives are putting in jeopardy, not only the security, but more importantly the lives of sitting members of the House," the statement added.
Apart from these demands in the manifesto, Abante also demanded that Badoy apologize to the House of Representatives over her remarks, or else he would move for the deferment of the budget deliberations of the PCOO.
In response, Bataan Representative Joet Garcia, who was sponsoring the PCOO's budget, said that Badoy's remarks were her personal opinion and does not involve the PCOO.
Nevertheless, he added that Badoy's remarks were the official positions of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict, of which she is spokesperson.
"Ayaw natin ng kaguluhan sa ating bansa, ayaw natin ng mga movement o mga aksyon para ipatumba ang ating pamahalaan. Yun lang din naman ang objective ni USec. Badoy," Garcia said.
"Kaya ayon na rin sa inyong manifesto, willing siya i-take down, willing siya humingi ng paumanhin, basta ang ating mga kasamahan ay magsa-sign din o kaya ipapaalam din sa lahat na sila ay laban sa kahit anong armed conflict para patumbahin ang ating pamahalaan," he added.
But Abante said there should be no conditions in making an apology.
"Kung talagang mag-aapologize si USec. Badoy, tinatanggal niya ang kanyang mga conditions. At magkaroon tayo ngayon ng agreement," he said.
With this, Abante pushed through with moving to defer the budget deliberations of the PCOO.
The majority bloc supported Abante's motion and, with no objections from other lawmakers, it was carried.
This was not the first time that the PCOO's budget deliberations was deferred due to the Badoy's red-tagging remarks.
In the committee level, the PCOO's budget briefing was also suspended after Makabayan Bloc members also slammed Badoy over her remarks. — BM, GMA News