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Senate to adjourn budget floor session to give way to 'drug trade' probe.

The Senate would adjourn its session on Tuesday night whether or not it was done with floor deliberations on the proposed P3.3 trillion national budget for 2017, Senate President Aquilino 'Koko' Pimentel III said.

This would pave the way for the Senate to hold committee hearings on Wednesday, Pimentel said.

At least two hearings have been scheduled for Wednesday, including that by the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs, which had invited suspected drug lord Kerwin Espinosa to testify in its ongoing inquiry into the Nov. 5 police killing of his father, the late Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr.

Pimentel earlier said that the Wednesday committee hearings might be cancelled if the Senate was unable to complete floor deliberations. He had said that the Senate could not hold committee hearings while in plenary sessions.

In text messages, Pimentel said the chamber would not suspend but adjourn its session on the budget deliberations on Tuesday night.

'I believe that even if we suspend (session), the committee can still hold its hearing. What is prohibited is simultaneous hearings and sessions,' the Senate president said.

Pimentel said he would call sessions at 3 p.m. on Wednesday to complete the budget deliberation of the remaining government agencies.

The Senate was supposed to complete the budget deliberations last Friday.

As of this posting Tuesday evening, the Senate was still completing the budget deliberations of four government agencies.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Nov 22, 2016
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