House leaders welcome FPRRD’s support for economic constitutional amendments

HOUSE leaders on Monday welcomed former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s recent statement expressing support for amending the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution, with one urging the former Chief Executive’s supporters to follow suit.

“Natutuwa po ako sa pagbabago ng sentimyento ng dating pangulo kaso lang mas magiging maganda po ito kung pati ang mga sumusuporta sa kanya ay sumalamin din sa posisyon ng dating pangulo,” Deputy Speaker and 2nd District Rep. David “Jay-jay” Suarez said in a press conference.

Suarez reiterated the consistent focus of the House efforts on economic provisions since the passage of its own version of RBH 6 last year.

“Ever since we passed RBH 6 last year it was just purely on economic provisions. We’ve been consistent with the position, the stand, from day one and up until now. Siguro makikita naman ninyo doon sa RBH 7 talagang mirror resolution po ito ng Senado, kaya doon po talaga iikot ang deliberasyon sa economic amendments lamang,” he stressed.

Taguig 2nd District Rep. Amparo Maria Zamora shared Suarez’s assertions. “That’s exactly what we’ve been saying from the beginning that we’re pushing for Charter change just to push for these economic amendments.”

Zamora also highlighted the significance of Duterte’s support for economic Charter amendments, noting that it aligns with the goals pursued by previous Congresses and the current 19th Congress.

“So siguro po nakikita na ng ating well-respected former President Rodrigo Duterte ang linaw na ito naman talaga ‘yung matagal na pinu-push ng maraming administrasyon at siyempre ng 19th Congress,” she added.

Isabela 6th District Rep. Faustino “Inno” Dy hailed Duterte’s statement as a “welcome development,” particularly as it coincides with the commencement of deliberations by the House Committee of the Whole on RBH 7.

“Of course, it is a welcome development of former President Duterte supporting [economic] Charter change,” Dy said. “It’s a very historic day today (Monday) as we’re tackling RBH 7, strictly focusing on the economic provisions.”

Dy emphasized that through the deliberations of the Committee of the Whole, the chamber will have the opportunity to address the concerns of its members and their constituents regarding the constitutional amendments.

“We can really listen to all of the members in these next few days, kung ano po talaga ang mga sentimyento, ano po talaga ang mga daing po ng ating mga miyembro. At mapakinggan po natin at magkaroon po tayo ng magandang discussion,” he added.

Rizal 4th District Rep. Fidel Nograles, chair of the House Committee on Labor, also voiced his approval of Duterte’s changed stance on Charter amendments.

“Natutuwa rin tayo at nakikiisa tayo sa mga pahayag ng ating dating pangulo sapagkat panahon na upang tingnan natin muli ang ating Saligang Batas, kung paano natin mapapalawak ang investments at maisusulong din natin ang kapakanan ng ating mga manggagawa.”

During a prayer rally in Cebu Sunday night, Duterte announced his support for economic constitutional reforms or even changes in the presidential term, provided President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. guarantees he won’t seek reelection.

President Marcos has consistently maintained that his administration solely backs an economic Charter amendment and nothing beyond that.

Suarez noted that Duterte’s changed stance on economic constitutional reforms aligns with the ongoing efforts in the House of Representatives and the Senate.

Duterte’s endorsement of economic Charter amendments comes at a crucial time as the House initiates deliberations on Resolution of Both Houses No. 7 (RBH 7) through a Committee of the Whole.

RBH 7 mirrors the content of RBH 6, currently under consideration in the Senate, which primarily focuses on amending specific economic provisions in the Charter related to public services, education, and advertising.