Duterte’s promise to resign after federal Constitution is ratified only a bluff?
Updated (6:59 p.m.)
President Rodrigo Duterte’s promise to resign once the federal Constitution is ratified is just a bluff, a political analyst said Tuesday.
University of the Philippine political science Professor Gene Pilapil said it’s difficult to take the President seriously because he promised time and time again to resign over many issues that irritate him.
“This promise to resign in 2019 might yet be of the same weight as his campaign promise in 2016 to resign if after the first six months of his presidency he did not eradicate drugs and corruption in the country,” Pilapil said during the Senate inquiry on Charter change (Cha-cha).
The professor assailed the Consultative Committee (Con-Com) tasked to review the 1987 Constitution for producing a draft charter that lacks a clear transition plan.
“My reading here is that his promise to resign come 2019 is simultaneously a bluff and indicative of the lack of seriousness in the output of his own Con-com,” he said, adding that the President probably knows very well that the real writing of the constitution will happen in Congress.
“With his lieutenants fully in control of the House [of Representatives], no way would they allow him to bid them goodbye midway in his term,” he said.
Pilapil acknowledged, however, that the ban on Duterte’s re-election is a “significant step in the right direction.”
Upon the request of the President, the Con-com inserted a provision in the draft charter that would prohibit President Duterte from seeking reelection when the government reboots as a result of Charter change.
“One key institutional challenge to protect democracy is to commit the final output of Congress, if ever, to contain this crucial ban,” Pilapil emphasized. /ee
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