“We sent it to them, it was voted on. It’s part of the democratic process,” she said, adding that the House would vote on the bill on third and final reading on Monday and send it to the Senate after.
Michael Varcas
Federal charter not railroaded — Gloria Arroyo
Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) - December 8, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has denied that the House of Representatives railroaded the second-reading approval of a bill containing the chamber’s version of a federal constitution, arguing members deliberated on the proposal before it was put to a vote.

“We sent it to them, it was voted on. It’s part of the democratic process,” she said, adding that the House would vote on the bill on third and final reading on Monday and send it to the Senate after.

Rep. Lito Atienza of party-list group Buhay appealed to his colleagues to go slow on Charter change.

“There’s absolutely no reason to rush this very important measure that will impact all of us. Let us not be like blind cows being stampeded over a cliff. We should study this issue very thoroughly. It is impossible to discuss this crucial measure in just the few session days left,” he said.

He believes rushing the drafting and approval of a federal charter would deprive lawmakers of time to tackle other important measures and sacrifice quality study on the revisions to the Constitution.

Atienza expressed elation over a previous statement of Arroyo that she was prepared to leave the task of completing Cha-cha to the next Congress, quoting her saying: “We will bring it (Cha-cha) as far as we can bring it in the hope that the next Congress can continue the work.”

He pointed out that just as important as the proposed revisions to the Constitution is the proposal to shift the nation from the presidential to the federal system of government. He has been vocal about his stand that “federalism is not the solution to the problems of the nation.”

“The public should be informed through a national debate or forum to hear the pros and cons of federalism. The number one promise of those pushing for federalism is the strengthening of local autonomy. But this is already enshrined in the present Constitution,” he said.

All that is needed is for the government to obey the mandate of the Constitution and the Local Government Code in strengthening local government units (LGUs), he added.

“We will insist that the constitutional mandate and the provisions of the Local Government Code be respected – that functions be decentralized and funding be provided to LGUs to use in their development programs,” Atienza stressed.

CHARTER CHANGE FEDERALISM GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO
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