Filtered By: Topstories

Rodriguez: House to pursue Cha-Cha even though not a priority of Marcos

The House constitutional amendments panel will continue conducting hearings on pending measures seeking to change the Charter even though President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. said it is not a priority of his administration.

“We respect the opinion of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on constitutional amendment measures. We will of course consider it. But as an independent branch of government, the House of Representatives and Congress will proceed with its public dialogues on this issue,” said Cagayan de Oro Representative Rufus Rodriguez, committee chairperson.

“The House committee on constitutional amendments will continue holding public hearings and consultations on Charter or constitutional change (Cha-cha) proposals,” he added.

Rodriguez’s panel has conducted at least four hearings on pending Charter change proposals which range from seeking to ease restrictions on foreign ownership of industries and land to term extension of public officials.

The first two public hearings were held in Batasang Pambansa, while the third hearing was done in Cagayan de Oro last week. There is an ongoing Charter change hearing by Rodriguez’s panel in Iloilo province Monday.

“We laud and commend President Marcos Jr. for trying to entice foreign businessmen in his trips abroad to invest their money in the country. He is our best salesman. But certain restrictive provisions of the Charter could be impeding investments,” the lawmaker said.

“In our hearings at the House of Representatives last week and in Cagayan de Oro City last Friday, the overwhelming recommendation was to rewrite the Constitution’s economic provisions to allow for more foreign investments. The emerging consensus is to relax restrictions on the entry of foreign capital into the country,” he added.

Senator Robin Padilla, Senate committee on constitutional amendments chairman, expressed a similar sentiment, saying the pledges secured by President Marcos during his foreign trips will not materialize if the economic provisions of the Constitution will not be amended.

Rodriguez said his committee will hold more consultations in other parts of Luzon.

Speaker Martin Romualdez earlier said the House’s pursuit of Charter change is a move to secure foreign capital to fund more development projects.—AOL, GMA Integrated News