A member of House of Representatives has revived the call to amend the 1987 Constitution.
In his privilege speech, Quezon Rep. David “Jayjay” Suarez, said there is no better time to discuss Constitutional change than now that the country is addressing the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and starting to implement the so-called “new better normal.”
According to Suarez, having a “better normal” life after the pandemic needs a better Constitution.
It can be recalled that former chairman of the House committee on Constitutional reforms now Deputy Speaker Rufus Rodriguez had shelved the Charter Change or Cha-Cha discussion due to the pandemic and that the priority of the national government is to implement recovery programs for those affected by the COVID-19.
“Kailan nga ba ang tamang panahon upang pag-usapan ang isyung ito? Pag natapos na ang pandemya? Sinasabi na huwag pag-usapan ang reporma sa Saligang Batas hanggang may krisis, pero hindi ba mas mabilis at maayos ang pagtapos sa krisis kung maitatama ang kakulangan ng sistema?” he said.
“I very respectfully disagree with the sentiments used to automatically shut down the discussion. There is no better time to discuss Consitutional reform than now,” he added.
Suarez challenged his colleagues to enlighten and convince the public that Cha-Cha is the extraordinary solution to the extraordinary difficult time.
“Our responsibility as lawmakers and representatives of the Filipino people is to build trust, initiate a sober and people-inclusive discussion, and exhaust all means to enlighten our people about the issue,” he added.
The solon pointed out constitutional change may help the government properly address problems on economic slowdown and unemployment rate as well as providing Filipinos with enough food, health services, and better local government units programs.
According to the World Investment Report 2020 of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the country’s net Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) declined to 5 billion dollars in 2019.
Reports said that around 2 million Filipinos are jobless right now, and in recent news, 1 out of 3 Filipinos have experienced hunger in the recent months. The decline in FDIs from 2019 alone could have cushioned a large part of the damages of COVID19.
“Ilang milyong manggagawang Pilipino ho ang nabigyan sana ng trabaho sa halagang iyan. Nagamit sana ito para mabigyan ng mas malaking ayuda ang mahihirap na pamilya, ng mga tablets ang mga estudyante at mga guro natin na nag-aadjust nahihirapan sa distant learning, ng pondo ang mga magsasaka, ng PPEs ang mga frontliners, at marami pang iba. Ang nagdusa ho sa kakulangan ng pondo ay ang mga small businesses, ang sistema ng edukasyon, ang mga kabataan, at mga mahihirap dahil hindi nakasabay sa pangangailangan ng panahon ang ating Saligang-Batas,” he also said.
He noted that the country has been lagging behind neighboring ASEAN nations when it comes to FDI.Publication Source : People's Journal