Padilla says his federalism bill won't prioritize term extension | Inquirer News

Padilla says his federalism bill won’t prioritize term extension

/ 05:36 PM July 18, 2022
FILE PHOTO Sen. Robin Padilla. INQUIRER.net

FILE PHOTO Sen. Robin Padilla. INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Robin Padilla on Monday pushed for amendments to the 1987 Constitution, saying his version of charter change (cha-cha) will center on the shift to federalism and does not prioritize term extension of politicians.

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Padilla, who is poised to head chair the Senate committee on constitutional amendments, made the disclosure when asked if term extension is included in his federalism bill.

“’Yung term extension kasi nakaka-turn off ‘yan. ‘Pag ‘yan ang pinag-umpisahan ng charter change, nakakawalang-gana kasi parang ang dating, ang gusto natin pahabain ang termino. Sa akin, panghuling ano ‘yan eh — siguro pag-usapan na lang natin yan sa iba… Hindi ko priority ‘yun,” Padilla replied in an interview at the Senate.

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(Term extension is off-putting. If charter change will start with that, people will lose interest because it seems like we want to stretch the term. For me, that is the last consideration — maybe let’s talk about that next time… That is not my priority.)

Under Padilla’s proposed charter change, economic reform is the top priority in order to generate jobs for citizens.

“[A]ng lagi kong sinasabi ang unahin natin, ang pag-usapan natin ay economic reform. Ang gusto natin magkaroon ng trabaho ang mga Pilipino, ‘yung mga OFW (overseas Filipino worker) natin umuwi na ng Pilipinas,” he said.

(What I always say is, let us discuss economic reform. We want jobs for Filipinos and OFWs to return here in the Philippines.)

READ: Robin Padilla expresses support for Duterte, federalism

The senator also stressed that he wants to remove the 60-40 foreign ownership rule in the country.

The 1987 Constitution limits foreign ownership of businesses and public utilities to 40 percent while 60 percent is exclusive to Filipino citizens or corporations.

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Amid concerns on the plight of local industries, Padilla told the public to give foreigners a chance as it could provide more employment.

“Nako, mga mahal kong kababayan, 1987 Constitution — lagpas na po ng ilang taon ‘yan, 20 plus years na po ‘yan. ‘Yung sinasabi natin na papa’no naman ‘yung mga kababayan natin? Ang tanong po diyan, papa’no naman tayo? Papa’no naman ‘yung mga kababayan natin na hanggang ngayon ang export po natin ay tao,” he lamented.

(My beloved countrymen, 1987 Constitution — that is more than 20 years. We ask, how about our fellow Filipinos? The question should be, how about us? How about our fellow Filipinos who are being exported?)

“Palagay ko medyo maawa naman po tayo. Sa akin pong palagay binigyan na natin ng chance ang atin mga local businessman ng almost 30 years. Siguro hindi na po ‘yan kulang. Binigay na natin lahat sa kanila. Ngayon naman bigyan naman natin ng chance itong mga foreigners. Hindi naman po ibig sabihin na isasarado na natin, magkaroon nga sila ng magandang competition,” he further said.

(Let’s have mercy. I think we have given local businesses a chance for almost 30 years. I think that is not insufficient. We gave them everything. That does not mean that we are going to close, we will have a good competition.) – with reports from Nicole Faye Agcaoili, INQUIRER.net intern

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TAGS: Charter change, federalism, Robin Padilla, term extension
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