Drilon: House can’t dance Cha-cha without Senate
The House of Representatives cannot dance the “Cha-cha” (Charter change) without the Senate, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said on Tuesday.
Contrary to Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez’s statement, Drilon insisted that Cha-cha could not be done by the House alone.
“The Constitution provides that Congress, upon a vote of three fourths of all its members, can amend the Constitution,” the minority leader said in a statement.
“The Constitution is crystal clear with regard to the composition of Congress. Under Article VI, Section 1, ‘Congress of the Philippines’ shall consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives.
“Thus, the House of Representatives alone cannot constitute themselves as a constituent assembly and by its own three fourths’ vote, cannot amend the Constitution. They cannot do it without the other house which is the Senate,” Drilon added.
He said the participation of the Senate was required by the Constitution and therefore necessary.
Alvarez earlier said the House can proceed with the Cha-cha initiative even without the Senate.
“What assembly? Where in the Constitution is that stated?” the Speaker said. “Where in the Constitution did it say we have to convene?”
“We don’t have to talk about a Con-ass anymore. We just have to comply with the three-fourth votes of all members. For our part, we will send this to the people [for a vote],” he added. /jpv
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