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DESPITE NOGRALES’ CALL
House sets Charter change talks Tuesday

By Lira Dalangin-Fernandez
INQUIRER.net
First Posted 15:05:00 12/15/2008

Filed Under: Charter change, Constitution, Congress, Politics

MANILA, Philippines -- The committee at the House of Representatives that will tackle the issue of Charter change will proceed with its hearing Tuesday despite a declaration by Speaker Prospero Nograles that talks would temporarily be suspended.

In a phone interview, La Union Representative Victor Ortega, chairman of the committee on constitutional amendments, said there was no reason to postpone the hearing amid a number of resolutions pending before the committee.

The resolution filed by Nograles, seeking to amend the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution, is among those that will be tackled Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.

But Ortega said there was no certainty that the committee would vote on Nograles' resolution.

"It will depend on the discussion," he said.

Nograles had said that Charter change discussions would be put on hold until next year following the anti-Charter change rally last Friday.

The last three days of session will be devoted to debates on the extension of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program.

The House resolution on the land acquisition and distribution component of the program will expire on December 31.

Bayan Muna partylist Representative Teodoro Casiño welcomed Nograles' statement on Charter change and was hoping that the committee would heed the Speaker's call.

In a separate television interview, Nograles said any resolution on Charter change would have to go through the procedure as in any regular bills. He also reiterated that he favored constitutional convention as a mode to amend the 1987 Constitution over a constituent assembly.



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