Hundreds of Senate employees on Wednesday held a rally outside the Senate building in Pasay City to show support for Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and his resigned chief of staff Atty. Gigi Reyes.
The Senate employees picketed in front of the Senate building, chanting ‘Manong Johnny’ while holding placards expressing their love and support to Enrile and Reyes amid controversy over the use of Senate funds.
”We love you JPE” inscribed in one placard in support of Enrile whose decision to disburse P1.6 million additional maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) to every senator except to four has been questioned by some of his colleagues.
Another placard reads “No to resignation of Atty. Reyes” while another appealed: “No more fighting! Save the Senate.”
Last week, Reyes tendered her irrevocable resignation and later apologized to Senate minority Alan Peter Cayetano for calling him ‘Alan’ and hypocrite in a radio interview.
The rift between Enrile and Cayetano over the use of Senate funds turned personal and ugly a week ago when Enrile brought up an alleged P37 million debt of Cayetano’s father, the late former Senator Renato Cayetano.
Enrile showed document to prove his claim after Cayetano questioned Reyes’ presence in all-senators caucuses.
Last Monday, the majority of the senators agreed to declare ceasefire and allowed the Commission on Audit (COA) to audit the Senate funds by repealing a concurrent resolution which allowed the Senate and House of Representatives to submit a mere certification in liquidating funds.
Senate employees union vice president David Tan said they support the COA audit but not the proposal of Cayetano who pushed for people’s audit.