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‘Survivor bill’ to have more exhaustive line of presidential succession


A bill providing an exhaustive order of presidential succession in the event of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation has been filed at the Senate to ensure continuity and stability of operations in government.

According to a statement on Thursday, Senator Panfilo Lacson filed Senate Bill 982, or the “designated survivor” bill, to ensure that the Office of the President is never vacated even in exceptional circumstances.
He cited that the present constitutional provision states that the line of presidential succession includes the Vice President, Senate President, and House of Representatives Speaker.
In his bill, Lacson proposed that in case of death or permanent disability of those specified in the Constitution, the following elected and appointed officers — who are not under any disability to discharge the powers and duties of the Office of the President — shall act as President in the following order: the most senior senator, based on the length of service in the Senate; the most senior representative, based on the length of service in the House; and the member of the Cabinet designated by the President.
The bill also proposes that before any public or private activity, event or function with the attendance of the President, Vice President and ranking officials, the President shall designate a member of the Cabinet to be sequestered in a secret and secure location.
“In the event of an extraordinary circumstance resulting in the death or permanent disability of the President, Vice President, and the officials mentioned (in the proposed law), the designated member of the Cabinet shall act as President,” the bill read.
It also stated that official actions of the acting President pertaining to the day-to-day operation of the government shall remain effective unless revoked by the elected President within 90 days from his or her assumption of office.

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