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The House of Representatives in record time approved on second reading the P1.227 trillion nation budget but augmented appropriations for health, education, agriculture, public safety and security, assistance to OFWs and prisoners, and infrastructure.

Rep. Edcel C. Lagman of Albay, Chairman of the Committee on Appropriations, said that “while the House maintained the expenditure level proposed by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, it cut from within the projected appropriations to assure additional allotments for social services and infrastructure to the tune of more than P30-B.”

“Men should be men enough to ensure that no woman should die giving life.” This was the challenge made by Albay Rep. Edcel C. Lagman to the all-male participants of the “Men’s Congress” on maternal health and safe motherhood sponsored by the Quezon City Council on Population (QCCP) on 17 October 2007.

Lagman, a staunch women’s rights and reproductive health advocate, enjoined the participants to actively involve themselves in matters pertaining to family planning and responsible parenthood.

They may have been forcibly disappeared by agents of the State but the desaparecidos are never forgotten. Tomorrow, 30 August 2007, their families, relatives and friends will collectively and simultaneously remember them the world over as they observe the International Day of the Disappeared.

Rep. Edcel C. Lagman, principal author of House Bill 236 or the “Anti-Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance Act of 2007” and brother of disappeared labor and human rights lawyer Hermon C. Lagman, calls on his fellow legislators to mark the day with an unshakeable resolve to ensure that the bill will be among the first legislation that the current Congress will enact.

“It is distressing that the miracle of life means death to 10 mothers daily in the Philippines,” Rep. Edcel C. Lagman of Albay stressed during the 2nd National Multi-Sectoral Conference on Population and Development last August 15, 2007.

The Bicol solon is the principal author of House Bill No. 17 or the “Reproductive Health, Responsible Parenthood and Population Development Act of 2007”.

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo “is not a lame duck under any realistic assessment, political standard, lexicon definition and idiomatic expression.”

Rep. Edcel C. Lagman of Albay made this clear as he refuted the statements of some senators who labeled GMA as a “lame duck president” who feels “insecure”.