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Charter change resolution reaches House plenary

The Resolution of Both Houses No. 6 calling for a constitutional convention (con-con) to amend the 1987 Constitution has reached the plenary of the House of Representatives just two days after it was approved at the committee level.

Cagayan de Oro Representative Rufus Rodriguez, chairperson of the constitutional amendments panel, sponsored the measure on Wednesday.

Rodriguez said now is the time for charter change (cha-cha) and majority of stakeholders who participated in the public hearings are in favor of the proposed amendments.

“The result shows that out of 552 reactors and respondents, 424 or 77% are in favor, 109 or 20% are against and 19 or 3% abstained. In the mode  preferences, 226 or 41% are for Constitutional Convention, 91 or 16% are  for Constituent Assembly, 77 or 14% are for People’s Initiative and 158 expressed their no preference or 29%,” Rodriguez said.

Under con-con, the delegates that will draft the amendments will be elected by the public as provided under the 1987 Constitution.

Upon questioning by Camarines Sur Rep. Gabriel Bordado, Rodriguez said  that based on estimates by the Commission on Elections, it would need P1.5 billion to include a separate line for the choice of con-con delegate  in the ballot of the October 2023 barangay and youth polls.

Rodriguez added the con-con proper expenses is expected to reach P6 billion.

Another P3 billion, he added, will be needed for the conduct of a plebiscite for the people to approve the proposed constitutional amendments.

“This is of transcendental importance since this is about having a con-con that will draft a new constitution that is more attuned to globalization and provide job opportunities to our people,” Rodriguez said.—LDF, GMA Integrated News