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    Posted February 16, 2014 by

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    Phl senator asks court: Act on RH law

    SENATE President Franklin Drilon urged the Supreme Court in Manila to finally render a judgment on the controversial Reproductive Health Act case, the state-run Philippines News Agency (PNA) reported Sunday
    Drilon told PNA that the prolonged debacle on the law has stymied government efforts in addressing the necessity for much-needed maternal and infant care throughout the nation.
    “More than 14 months since the historic passage of the reproductive health law, the government’s hands are still tied when it comes to attending fully to the needs for maternal care of millions of mothers, most especially those living in the far-flung areas who barely had access to health services,” PNA quoted Drilon as saying.
    The Senate chief said the highest court’s ruling on the constitutionality of the law “is vital in freeing the government to act on maternal deaths and other health complications affecting women, wives and mothers in the country.”
    “The implementation of the RH law has been hanged in a state of limbo pending a court decision, leaving the government temporarily incapacitated on its legitimate goal of removing the stumbling blocks to providing maximum maternal and infant care throughout the country,” Drilon told PNA.
    He noted that addressing maternal deaths is a commitment under the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, where the country is woefully lagging behind.
    He added: “Whatever the verdict of the Supreme Court, only then will be the government freed to either continue with the RH law, or proceed to formulate another national policy on this issue.”
    However, Drilon said that as he is calling for increased decisiveness by the high court, he also concurs on the issue with fellow Congressional leaders, such as House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr., who had earlier called on the Supreme Court to uphold the constitutionality of the RH law.
    The implementation of the controversial health law, which was passed by the 15th Congress in December 2012, was blocked by petitions filed before the high court on the ground that it’s against the sanctity of life.
    The high court on March 2013 issued a status quo ante order against the law.
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