Duterte wants abolition of partylist system in new Constitution

Jul. 30, 2016
DEADLINE. President Rodrigo R. Duterte announces during his visit at Camp Morgia in Doña Andrea, Asuncion, Davao del Norte on Friday, July 29, 2016 that the New People’s Army only has until 5:00 p.m. of July 30, Saturday to declare a ceasefire from their side. Otherwise, Duterte will lift the Unilateral Ceasefire he has declared during his first State of the Nation Address. (RENE LUMAWAG/PPD)

President Rodrigo R. Duterte says he will insist on removing the partylist system in the new Charter as it has been abused by many. He made the statement during his visit at Camp Morgia in Doña Andrea, Asuncion, Davao del Norte on Friday, July 29, 2016. (RENE LUMAWAG/PPD)

DAVAO CITY – President Rodrigo Duterte said that he will insist on the exclusion of the partylist system when the Constitutional reforms commence.

Speaking in a military camp in Asuncion town, Davao del Norte on Friday, July 29, Duterte said that the partylist system “is just being abused by everyone.”

“Pati mga mayayaman, ang nananalo yung may pera (Even the rich, those who have money wins). Representing the what, security guard?,” Duterte said.

Thru Republic Act No. 7941 approved on March 3, 1995, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) wants to ensure that the marginalized sectors are represented in the government.

“Kaya itong partylist, it will never come again,” he said.

Duterte said that the partylist system is a “mockery of the law”, adding that it is the “most insulting” that one could do.

In a phone interview, Anakpawis representative Ariel Casilao said that Duterte’s pronouncement “shows his disappointment manifested on the reality that the partylist system has been hijacked by the rich and powerful.”

Casilao said that because of the court ruling that allows organizations and advocacy groups to join partylists elections, “it paved the way for [the] bogus, rich, and powerful dynasties, through the partylists” to dominate Congress.

He said that the rich and wealthy “hijacked the small space allotted supposedly for genuine representation.”

On the planned constitution reforms by the Duterte administration, Casilao said that Anakpawis’ main stand is towards “genuine democratic representation.”

“Whatever the form of representation, the primordial [consideration] is to address the economic inequalities,” Casilao said.

He said that the marginalized should be equally and proportionally represented.

“To take away the opportunity of the rich and powerful on the monopoly [in the government],” he said.

Meanwhile, during the same press conference, Duterte admitted that he does not favor charter change through Constitutional Convention because it will be costly.

“Alam mo sa totoo lang, ayaw ko mag Con-Con, bakit? Magastos. It will run into billions,” Duterte said adding that the estimate is around P200 billion to P300 billion.

But he said that he will not allow the new constitution to be anti-Filipino, “yan ang asahan ninyo (I assure you).” (davaotoday.com)

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