On March 19, 2018, the House of Representatives voting 134 in favor, 57 against, and two abstentions overwhelmingly approved on third and final reading a long-awaited bill legalizing divorce in the Philippines – the last remaining country, besides the Vatican, where couples do not have the right to absolute divorce.
(Inspirational Message of Rep. Edcel C. Lagman during the rites marking the restoration of the Gabaldon School Building on October 4, 2019 at the Tabaco South Central Elementary School)
I was a frail looking 5th and 6th grader more than six (6) decades ago, along with other pupils, who attended classes in the huge Gabaldon School Building here at the then Tabaco Central Elementary School, now the Tabaco South Central Elementary School.
(Speech delivered by Rep. Edcel C. Lagman at the Forum on Public Expression and Censorship during Martial Law at the UP Law Center on 24 September 2019)
We commemorate the declaration of martial law not to celebrate a national tragedy but to remind ourselves not to forget the atrocities and plunder it spawned.
And also to guard and be vigilant against its recurrence.
It is inordinately shameful that as we mark the 47th anniversary of Marcos’ martial rule, we have a thrice-extended martial law in the entire of Mindanao, even as we continue to experience the repression of press freedom and the persecution of human rights defenders, among other victims, reminiscent of the martial law years.
(Lecture delivered by REP. EDCEL C. LAGMAN, Honorary Chair of PLCPD,on 10 August 2019 at Tagaytay City)
The rights of women and children are related and interlinked
It is very easy to see how the lives of women and children are intertwined.
At the very beginning of their relationship, at conception and from inside the womb, a mother and her baby share the same blood supply and the same reserve of nutrients. When it is born, one of the first things a baby sees is its mother’s face; the voice that soothes a child when it is hurt or scared would most likely be the familiar voice of its mother.
It is important to remember that the first year of a child’s life impacts on a lifetime. A mother is likely to be a constant presence in the first year of her baby’s life. What happens during this first year will have far reaching effects on the future of children – their long-term health, whether or not they do well in school, their ability to find work, their feelings of self-worth, the qualities of the spouse they choose to live their lives with, and the kind of parents they will be to their own children.