VP out of power succession aims to avoid ‘instability’ in leadership
The move of the House constitutional amendments panel to skip the Vice President as President Rodrigo Duterte’s successor during the transition period towards a federal form of government was done to prevent “instability.”
Leyte 3rd District Rep. Vicente “Ching” Veloso, the chair of the committee that approved the draft federal charter filed by Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and others, said this on Monday, alluding to the ongoing electoral protest of former Senator Bongbong Marcos against Vice President Leni Robredo.
“May nag-propose na ideretso na lang sa Senate President para walang instability tayo in the occupancy sa napaka-importanteng posisyon,” Veloso said in a phone interview.
“Saka ang hirap nito, it’s not only an ongoing protest, this involves a very small margin. ‘Yun lang naman ang punto ng proponent dyan,” he added.
The former senator, who is a namesake of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr., has accused Robredo of cheating after he lost to her by over 230,000 votes in the 2016 elections, an allegation Robredo had repeatedly denied.
But Veloso has denied the provision under their proposed draft Charter aims to boot Robredo out of the picture.
“Look at the current events… number 1 hindi naman kami under the President, number 2, constituent assembly tayo so the Senate will have its version also na ire-reconcile,” he said. “Gusto lang namin na maayos ang stability ng pagpapatakbo ng bansa.”
Under the transitory provisions of Resolution of Both Houses of Congress No. 15, “in case a vacancy arises by reason of removal, resignation, permanent incapacity or death of the incumbent President, the incumbent Senate President shall act as President until a President shall have been chosen and qualified.”
READ: Arroyo federal charter excludes VP from succession during transition
The House draft Charter also states that members of Congress – senators and congressmen – would be elected for a term of four years. There would be no limit for their re-election but Congress members should be college degree holders, the draft added.
READ: Arroyo’s draft charter ‘could be worse than 1935 Constitution’—Generoso
Veloso defended the proposed lifting of term limits for Congress members, saying it was a “wise concept.”
“I am now 72 years old. I am a product of the 1935 Constitution, wala tayong term limits do’n kaya lumabas ang magagaling na senador… Itong (political) dynasty, anak lang ‘yan ng term limits,” he said.
“What was wise to the framers of the 1935 Constitution, to us, is still a wise concept na walang term limits,” he added. /kga
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