By Hannah Torregoza
Citing lack of time, Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon said the House of Representatives should just abandon any plans to convene Congress into a constituent assembly to propose amendments to the 1987 Constitution.
Drilon made the call following House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s filing of House Resolution No. 2056 which expresses the position of the House of Representatives that “Congress convenes into a constituent assembly (Con-Ass) to propose amendments to or revision of the Constitution.”
Under the House proposal, both the Senate and the House of Representatives shall vote separately.
However, the minority leader cited the impracticality of convening Congress to start deliberations on charter change, with the end view of shifting the form of government to federalism.
“The House should give up on convening Congress into a Con-Ass to do Cha-Cha. There is simply no time in the 17th Congress,” Drilon said.
He also said there is much distrust between members of the two Houses when it comes to the processes involved in the drafting of a new Constitution for a federal form of
“The possibility of making the Senate irrelevant through joint voting and a no-el (no election) scenario, generate mistrust on the process,” he said.
Arroyo, in explaining the resolution, said deliberations on Charter change would be conducted similar to how Congress deliberated on the Bangsamoro Organic Law or BOL.
She however declined to set a target date to convene the Con-Ass saying the House is still uncertain with the Senate’s view on the matter.
Aside from Arroyo, co-authors of the resolution include Representatives Rolando Andaya Jr., Vicente Veloso, Arthur Yap and Alfredo Garbin Jr.