Enrile favored the Cha-cha by constitutional assembly: left it to Congress

by Jason de Asis on Friday, January 14, 2011 at 6:59pm

SENATE OFFICE, Manila, January 14, 2011-Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile said yesterday he was in favor of charter change in the country through a constitutional assembly saying cha-cha is imperative and it is needed now, however, he said that we do not need a Constitutional Commission (Con-con) that would only cost a lot of money.


Enrile said that the Congress can do it to amend the fundamental law, saying that he prefers to have public officials elected by the people, who have to live with the present Constitution and have an intimate grasp of problems facing the nation and various constitutional experts should be consulted.


Enrile said he is also in favor to shift to a unicameral parliamentary system saying that if the result of the voting is to abolish the Senate, so be it, however, he said that  it’s not the House alone that will decide wherein the views of the senators will also be considered as part of the constitutional assembly to have a balance opinion.


“We need to amend the Charter because it is a source of our problems as a nation and it retards our progress. As long as we have the present Constitution we will remain where we are,” Enrile said.


When he asked about how Charter change could help curb corruption, the senator said that no one can change the character of the Filipino through Charter change but you can open up the country to development, adding that the problem of corruption is a question of law enforcement. The problem will stop if the government should jail the corrupt and seize their ill-gotten wealth.


“Some of the provisions of the 1987 Constitution hinder the nation’s progress and favors only the rich,” Enrile said, adding that it allows them to invest as much as 60% in mining, agriculture, transportation, and so on.


The investors bring their profits to China, Canada, Australia, Guam and even Papua New Guinea after making lots of money in the country, pointing out that the said countries are much benefited while many Filipinos remain unemployed.


Enrile stressed that a comprehensive investment policy is needed to protect not only the rich but also the poor. We can control the foreigners but not the rich Filipinos who control our politics, the judiciary, the executive branch, and even the police and the military. He said that the nation suffers while the present set-up works to their advantage.


He observed that in every administration, there is a call for Charter change that is why there is a need for cha-cha.


“The oppositions favor it for their interests only and not for the public interest, therefore, the 1987 Constitution should be amended and let the congress do it,” Enrile concluded. (Jason de Asis)





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