MANILA – The passage of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) Equality bill will still be up to lawmakers even as President Duterte has expressed support for the landmark measure, Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.
“With respect to any bill, the discretion, the wisdom will always lie in the lawmakers,” Panelo said.
He was responding to Senate President Vicente Sotto III’s statement that the bill protecting the rights of the LGBTQ community stands no chance of passing at the Senate.
Sotto: SOGIE bill ‘no chance’ passing in Senate
“Still, even if the President supports it, if Congress disagrees, that’s how the so-called balance of power and checks and balances operate,” he said.
Panelo, however, could not confirm whether the President would certify the bill as urgent following his meeting with transgender woman Gretchen Diez and other LGBTQ rights advocates in Malacanang last week.