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Cotabato hosts Senate public hearing on charter change

By Teng L. Datu
Cotabato City Bureau Chief

Cotabato City — The Senate committees on Constitutional Amendments, Revision of Codes and Laws; and Electoral Reforms and Peoples’ Participation conducted a joint regional consultation hearing with representatives and participants from various sectors, regarding proposals to amend or revise the 1987 Philippine Constitution here recently.

Sen. Francis Pangilinan, chair of the Committee on Constitutional Amendments, Revision of Codes and Laws and concurrent vice-chair of the Committee on Electoral Reforms and Peoples’ Participation, led the hearing.

Most of the representatives from the academe, indigenous peoples’ communities, people’s organizations and civil society organizations expressed support to change the text of the 1987 Philippine Constitution provided “it will reflect the collective aspirations of the people of Mindanao.”

“We are not against whatever na gusto ng gobyerno, as long as we are not deprived of our self-determination,” said Sofia Paguital, member of the civil society group Mindanao People’s Caucus.

Assemblyman Zia Alonto-Adiong said changes in the constitution “should include anti-political dynasty provisions that must be supported by a good political system.”

Majority of the participants in the consultation favors a constitutional convention (Con-Con) over a constituent assembly (Con-Ass) should there be a final decision that the constitution be amended or revised. A Con-Con is made up of elected delegates and can propose both amendments and revisions, while a Con-Ass is convened by Congress to propose amendments. (with reports from bpi armm)



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