Palace: 2019 polls to proceed unless new Charter is ratified
Malacañang on Thursday distanced itself from the no-election scenario in 2019 floated by House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and assured that the elections will proceed next year.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Alvarez’s statement saying that it was “practical” to suspend the midterm elections to give way to the country’s shift to a federal form of government did not have the blessing of President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Wala po. Gaya ng paulit-ulit nating sinasabi, ang Presidente po ay tagapagpatupad ng ating Saligang Batas. Hanggang di po mababago ang petsa ng halalan na nakasaad sa ating Saligang Batas, patutupad po ‘yan ng Presidente. Matutuloy po ang eleksyon ng 2019,” Roque said in a Palace briefing.
(Nothing. Just like what we always say, the President is the implementor of our Constitution. Until the date of our election is not changed as stated in the Constitution, the President will implement it. The elections in 2019 will proceed.)
He said the only possibility for the suspension of the elections was if the proposed new Charter is ratified before the May 2019.
“Ang only possibility po eh kung maratify ng mas maaga itong proposed new Constitution, in which case the  Constitution would cease to have legal effect. Pero habang wala pa pong bagong Saligang Batas, sisiguraduhin po ng Presidente magkaka-eleksyon,” he said.
(The only possibility is that when the proposed new Constitution will be ratified, in which case the 1987 Constitution would cease to have legal effect. But until there is no new Constitution, the President assures that there will be an election.) /jpv
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