Makabayan bloc urges House to defer Cha-cha deliberations amid transport strike
MANILA, Philippines — Lawmakers from the Makabayan bloc have asked the House of Representatives leadership to defer the deliberations on charter change (Cha-cha) proposals amid the week-long transport strike.
According to the bloc on Monday, the nation is currently more concerned with the public transportation issue after jeepney drivers staged a strike, in response to the public utility vehicle (PUV) modernization program which may result in the phaseout of traditional jeepneys.
The Makabayan bloc is composed of Gabriela party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas, Alliance of Concerned Teachers party-list Rep. France Castro, and Kabataan party-list Rep. Raoul Manuel.
“The Makabayan bloc in Congress today called on the House leadership to defer scheduled deliberations on Charter change while the transport strike is ongoing,” Makabayan said in a statement.
“The nation and our constituents are more concerned now on how to help public utility (PUV) drivers ensure their jobs and livelihood that are about to be phased out by the supposed modernization of PUVs,” they added.
The lawmakers said that discussing charter change on the backdrop of the strike is “insensitive”.
Currently, there are two measures on charter change that are on the plenary: Resolution of Both Houses (RBH) No. 6 which calls for a constitutional convention to amend the 1987 Constitution, and House Bill (HB) No. 7352 which if enacted, would be the enabling law to RBH No. 6.
RBH No. 6 was passed on second reading last February 28, while HB No. 7352 was brought up in the plenary last March 1.
Instead of deliberating the charter change proposals, the Makabayan lawmakers said Congress should allot the time to discuss what measures can be done to support public transport drivers and operators.