Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago

Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago

MANILA (Mabuhay) – Lung cancer-stricken Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago on Wednesday walked out of the hearing of the Commission on Appointments foreign affairs committee after Rep. Rodolfo Fariñas questioned the proceedings due to lack of quorum.

Santiago, chair of the committee, was already hearing the nomination of Nathaniel Imperial, Chief of Mission, Class II, as ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary to the State of Israel when Farinas raised the issue.

Fariñas said the committee lacked quorum to proceed with the hearing but Santiago said the presence of the committee chairperson is enough to consist a quorum.

“Whether you uphold me or not, I will proceed with the hearing. Ako lang mag-isa i can make a motion and pass it,” she said.

Farinas, however, insisted on the lack of quorum.

“You are questioning my authority? Matagal nang ganito ang proceedings ngayon sisirain mo?,” Santiago said.

She then adjourned the hearing and walked out of the room.

Middle finger

But it seemed that even before proceeding to the CA hearing, Santiago was already in a feisty mode.

Upon arriving at the Senate, Santiago told reporters: “I’m here and I’m ready to punch my enemies on the nose.”

“Those involved in the plunder issue and the Makati building issue are the reasons why God created the middle finger,” she added.

But it was evident during the hearing that Santiago was catching her breath while talking.

Santiago later said she is still in partial recovery and expects to return to her Senate duties on October 20.

She said she just attended the hearing because there were a lot of nominees needed to be confirmed.

She added that if there is anything that cancer has not changed, “it is my temper.” (MNS)