RH Bill Issue in the Philippines

Five Ilonggo solons have voted for the passage of Reproductive Health (RH) bill 4244, except for Iloilo 2nd district Rep. Augusto “Boboy” Syjuco who preferred to support the Church’s stand against the modern method of family planning particularly the use of contraceptives and modern natural family planning methods.

Based on the proposed RH bill, the modern method of family planning refers to a legal method to prevent pregnancy such as the pill, intra-uterine device (IUD), injectables, condom, ligation, vasectomy, while the modern natural family planning methods include mucus, billings, ovulation, lactational amenorrhea, basal body temperature, and Standard Days methods.

“Congress provides the floor to discuss the bill and vote for it. Whatever the outcome or it would be passed into law, at least I have done my part and take my stand for what I have believed is right,” Syjuco told the Philippines News Agency.

Currently, there are 20 senators and 100 congressmen who have voted to support the bill while only 30 congressmen are still undecided, Ma. Riza Hontiveros-Baraquel of Akbayan partylist, one of the bill’s co-authors, said during her recent visit in Iloilo City where she was the guest speaker in the 2nd Regional Population Congress held at Iloilo Grand Hotel.

The bill is already on its second reading at the lower house despite the Catholic organizations opposing the bill by holding a series of protest actions and campaigns nationwide to block the passage of the bill as Congress resumes its session this week after the State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Benigno Aquino III Monday.

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