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(Speech delivered by REP. EDCEL C. LAGMAN at the Elderly Filipino Week Celebration of Tabaco City on 12 October 2018)

The youth are often praised and admired for being the hope of the future and their achievements regularly extolled. But we should not forget that if the youth are the hope of the future, senior citizens are the fulfillment of the present and their invaluable contributions to the development of the nation must likewise be applauded and underscored.

I am therefore heartened to see so many senior citizens here this evening, all as proud of their gray hair and wrinkles as they are of their well-lived and productive lives. And as I look at you, my contemporaries, I am reminded of the adage “For the unlearned, old age is winter; for the learned, it is the season of the harvest.”

It is significant that the hallowed grounds of the University of the Philippines is where we launch today MAKATAO (Mambabatas para sa Karapatang Pantao).

For decades, the University has been the fertile ground which nourished human rights advocacies and their fulfillment.

It is also opportune that UP is the venue of our launch in order to rekindle the spirit of human rights activism in the face of perception that the UP officialdom and studentry are beginning to waiver in the crucial fight for the promotion, protection and fulfillment of human rights.

(Delivered on 12 March 2018 by REP. EDCEL C. LAGMAN, one of the principal authors of House Bill No. 7303)


Despite the eventual institution, hopefully, of a law on absolute divorce and dissolution of marriage, the State shall be steadfast in protecting marriage as a social institution and as the foundation of the family.

(Speech of Rep. Edcel C. Lagman during the Roundtable Discussion on Policy Reform to End Child, Early and Forced Marriages on 07 March 2018 at the House of Representatives)

Child, early and forced marriages (CEFMs) seem to be practices that hark back to the Dark Ages or a plot in a tearjerker telenovela. The archaic image of the innocent and ill-fated child bride is one that is readily associated with primitive tribes or nations in Africa or South Asia, not with a country like the Philippines – a country that has consistently performed very well in gender surveys and ranked high in global assessments measuring indicators of women empowerment.

But the scourge of CEFMs is not restricted to soap operas and countries like India and tribes like the Masai in Kenya. There are child brides in the Philippines. It is happening in our country and the numbers are alarming.

(Privilege Speech of Rep. Edcel C. Lagman of the First District of Albay)


Mr. Presiding Officer and Distinguished Colleagues:


Deputy Speaker Gwendolyn Garcia in a privilege speech last Valentine’s Day, scored repeatedly this Representation for being critical of the position of Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez of not enforcing her dismissal as ordered by the Ombudsman on the grounds that (1) he is going to determine the validity of the Ombudsman decision; and (2) only the House of Representatives can discipline or dismiss its Members.