Don’t force Cha-cha – solons
Forcing the issue of Charter change (Cha-cha) “foments discord and creates political instability” which worsens “the economic crisis the administration created,” Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin said Monday.
The opposition lawmaker’s critique came after a Pulse Asia survey released Monday showed that two in three Filipinos, or 67 percent, were against current moves to change the 1987 Constitution, while majority oppose a shift to federalism.
Villarin stressed the prevailing sentiment among Filipinos against Cha-cha is “a knock on the head of a stubborn Duterte administration.”
“All surveys are consistent that a big majority don’t want charter change now and in the future. While opposition to charter change is said to be ‘easing’ a bit such number is insignificant,” he said.
He added: “It reeks of arrogance and insensitivity to the plight of the poor already burdened by (the) high cost of living and dying from a fake war against illegal drugs.”
ACT-Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio, for his part, said the survey, aside from showing “growing opposition” to both Cha-cha and federalism, also proved that the move has “self-interested motives.”
“It shows that Pres. Duterte’s push to amend the Constitution and shift to a federal form of government is an initiative of politicians, by politicians, for politicians. The people see right through and reject their self-interested motives,” Tinio noted.
Meanwhile, Gabriela Rep. Emmi de Jesus said the move to amend the 1987 Constitution is being “force-fed” to Filipinos by the Duterte administration to “further consolidate his dictatorial rule with the federal shift as stepping stone.”
“Panawagan namin sa kababaihan at sa mamamayan na ipakita ang pagtutol sa Cha-cha sa pamamagitan ng paglahok sa malaking pagkilos sa ikatlong SONA ni Duterte,” De Jesus said.
Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate, on the other hand, warned those pushing for “self-serving” Cha-cha that the message of the survey results is very clear: “Better stop it now, or, face the peoples’ wrath.”
“The bold writings are very clear on the wall: the majority of our people are opposed to Charter change and this is bound to grow as more of its provisions are exposed as anti-people and will only further the self-serving interests of the present elitist system,” Zarate said.
The proposed amendments to the 1987 Constitution being pushed by Duterte’s allies in Congress and by Duterte’s Consultative Committee (Con-com) could pave the way to a shift to a federal form government – one of his campaign promises and an advocacy of his political party, Partido Demokratiko Pilipino Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban). /kga
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