Senate okay needed – Drilon

Franklin Drilon

OPPOSITION Senator Franklin Drilon yesterday urged the Supreme Court to immediately decide on the petitions to invalidate the withdrawal of the Philippines from the International Criminal Court (ICC) which is assumed to have taken effect last Sunday.

“I would like to urge the Supreme Court to already decide on this case, taking into account the sentiment of the 18 senators who signed the resolution,” Drilon said.

Drilon maintained the position of the senators that the withdrawal from ICC “must be with the concurrence of the majority of the senators”. 

“As I’ve said, it (the resolution) was not formally adopted, but this reflects the thinking of the senator. And in fact subsequent to all of this, every treaty ratified by the Senate contained a provision that any withdrawal must be with the concurrence of the Senate,” he explained.

But he also justified the executive branch action in pulling out the country’s membership saying that it only acted based on the prerogative to take a legal position.

Drilon agreed with the assumption of lawyer Jude Sabio that the case filed with ICC will continue despite the withdrawal of membership of the Philippine government.

“My reading of the statues indicates that indeed cases filed before the withdrawal will not affect the jurisdiction of the ICC in trying the case if in fact they find probable cause,” Drilon said.

He then said that it is now up to the Senate leadership to calendar for debates the resolution signed by 18 senators insisting that there is a need for the Senate to ratify the withdrawal from the ICC.