Political will to implement laws works better than Charter change – Recto

By Vanne Elaine Terrazola

The government does not need to amend the 1987 Constitution to “change” the country, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto maintained Wednesday.

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto (Ali Vicoy / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)
Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto

He cited neophyte Manila Mayor Francisco Domagoso as a “glowing Exhibit A” as proof that “many the country’s problems can be solved without having to rewrite the Constitution.”

Moreno, who replaced former President and Mayor Joseph Estrada has been making headlines lately for fulfilling a campaign promise from Day 1 to clean the city of Manila of garbage and clear Divisoria, Carriedo and Blumentritt of illegal vendors. The move which allowed clogged streets to breathe has won the approval of Manilenos, including the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

For Recto, this proves that the proper management of government and implementation of laws are key to change and progress.

“A change of plans, vision and management style will do wonders and spark change immediately, rather than the untested benefits that Charter change promises to bring,” Recto said in his statement.

“It seems that more progress can be wrought by seriously implementing whatever existing laws there are than in rewriting the basic law of the land later,” he repeated.

In stressing his point, the Senate leader said changing the Constitution would not particularly solve the country’s problem with floods, traffic, crime and garbage.

This is also not the proper way to increase employment and improve industries, he added.

“Having said that, I, however, recognize the right and welcome the move of proponents of constitutional amendments to bring their proposals for debate in a manner that is exhaustive, not expedient; thorough, not truncated,” he clarified.

“Any idea that is presented before Congress must win by the force of its arguments and not by the mere number of people supporting it. Charter change must not be part of the government’s railroad program,” he added.

On Monday, President Duterte raised anew his proposal to amend the Constitution though conceding that his promise to change the system from democratic to federal can no longer be realized.

Duterte asked lawmakers to change the Charter to end corruption in government which, he claimed angers the military.

Senators, however, remain careful about the proposal citing the need to review the proposed Constitutional amendments and the manner of doing it.