House solon seeks PAO modernization

September 06, 2019

A neophyte solon has filed a measure seeking to modernize the Public Attorneys Office (PAO).

A member of Lakas-CMD, Rizal Rep. Fidel Nograles is urging his colleagues to also prioritize the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) Modernization Act of 2019.

“My legal aid advocacy helped me win a seat in Congress. It is only fitting that among my priority initiatives would be making legal services more available and more accessible to all,” Nograles said.

The purpose of the modernization is to strengthen and modernize the PAO and widen its coverage to cater to more sectors who cannot afford legal services or who deserve free legal assistance.

The proposed PAO Modernization Act of 2019 also seeks to ensure that a legal defense and representation fund is available in all government offices, in order to help government personnel who may be attacked by virtue of the conduct of their official duty.  

It also highlights empowering sectoral groups and grassroots-level organizations as it proposes that the PAO shall render, free of charge, legal representation, assistance, and counselling for sectoral representation, including but not limited to cases involving the environment, labor, Indigenous Peoples, and persons with disabilities.