VOTING separately from the Senate, the House of Representatives yesterday approved on third and final reading the Resolution of Both Houses No. 15 aimed at amending the 1987 Constitution.
More than the required one-third vote, the RHB 15 got the nods of the 224 solons while 22 voted no and three abstained.
Principally authored by Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, RBH No. 15 proposes the shift of the government system to federal, which is also the advocacy of President Rodrigo Duterte.
The House did not wait for the Senate to convene since they opted for the “voting separately” format.
The RBH No. 15 also proposes to lift the term limits of legislators and local officials.
Members underscored the need to amend the Constitution to make it responsive to the exigencies of the times.
It further aims to spur regional economic development in the countryside and provide impetus to much needed socio-economic and political reforms.
RBH 15 mandates that the form and structure of government shall be that of a presidential-bicameral-federal system and includes “sovereign rights” as part of the national territory.
It also proposes that State Principles and Policies ensure that relations between the Church and State shall be governed by benevolent neutrality.
The draft constitution further adopts a Bill of Rights that includes the natural right to protect oneself which shall always be respected by the State, as well as a new article mandating Filipino citizens to be loyal to the country and exercise their rights responsibly.