Senate adopts resolution electing Zubiri as Senate President Pro Tempore effective June 29

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(Photo from Senator Juan Miguel 'Migz' Zubiri's Facebook page)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 1) ⁠— The Senate on Wednesday adopted a resolution naming Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri as Senate President Pro Tempore, which will essentially be an officer-in-charge post, effective June 29 and until the start of the 19th Congress.

Minority Leader Franklin Drilon made the motion during the final session of the 18th Congress. He pointed out that the chamber needs a leader when the terms of Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto III and incumbent Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto end at noon of June 30.

According to Drilon, it is imperative that the duties and rules of the Senate be fully discharged without interruption until the organization of the 19th Congress on July 25.

In sponsoring the resolution, he stressed that Zubiri who is currently the Majority Leader is the most qualified for the President Pro Tempore position as he has the "required experience and familiarity" with the workings of the Senate.

"And I understand that Senator Zubiri has the votes of the senators in the 19th Congress to become the next Senate President," Drilon added.

After the resolution was adopted, Zubiri gave a short speech, again explaining that the assumption of the post is just to ensure everything is in order when Congress returns.

"Because if there is no officer-in-charge at that time, no one will be signing the cheques of the Senate, we will not be able to conduct business, and we'll not be able to pay the salaries of our people," he explained.

"We'll subject ourselves again to election once we come back before the SONA (State of the Nation Address) on the last Monday of July," Zubiri further pointed out.

The 53-year-old lawmaker is aspiring to succeed Sotto as the next Senate President.

In an earlier media briefing, Zubiri said he wants Senator Loren Legarda to be the President Pro Tempore and Senator Joel Villanueva to be the Majority Leader.

READ: Legarda for SP pro tempore, Villanueva for majority leader under Zubiri Senate presidency