CAUAYAN CITY, Isabela, Sept. 26 (PIA) – – Members of the Consultative Committee to Review the 1987 Constitution presented the proposed federal constitution to media and government information officers of Cagayan Valley Region during the media forum today.
The media forum was part of the two-day regional federalism roadshow here spearheaded by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) with the theme ‘Pederalismo para sa Tunay na Pagbabago’.
In partnership with the Provincial Government of Isabela, the DILG acts as the head of an inter-agency team tasked to advocate for constitutional reform towards federalism.
Basic concepts of the proposed Federalism
During the discussion, Fr. Ranhilio Aquino, commissioner, discussed the basic concepts of proposed federalism, its provisions on bill of rights and the national territory.
Aquino said the proposed shift to federal form of government constitutionalizes the law on archipelagic baselines.
He said the federal government will give full autonomy to the regional federated states to pursue development programs and projects that will propel the regions’ economy.
“We want the regions to exercise their independence and give integrity to the republic,” Aquino said.
He added that the Federal Republic shall guarantee the public nature of elections, ensure full transparency and accessibility of the electroral process and the verifiability and integrityof the electroarl results, regadless of the mode of election.
Structure of the proposed federal government
For his part, Lawyer Lawrence Wacnang, commissioner, presented the structure of the proposed federal government and the constitutional bodies.
He said the constitution provides for the distribution of powers between the central government and the regional government. “There will be President directly elected by the people in tandem with the Vice President,” he added.
He also said they are proposing to expand the judiciary in which the Supreme Court will be supplemented by constitutional, electoral and administrative high courts.
On economic reform and fiscal administration
On the other hand, Commissioner Susan Ordinario presented the functions of the federated regions while Commissioner Virgilio Bautista discussed the economic reform and fiscal administration components of the proposed federal constitution.
Bautista said that along with economic development comes the need to provide basic services for the people in terms of health, education, and social protection programs.
The two commissioners stressed that there will be fair distribution of the regions wealth which will facilitate development in the provinces and cities.
Bautista also mentioned that there will be stronger auditing processes to avoid corruption in the federal government and the federal system will fastrack the implementation of government projects as the procedures will be easier compared to the unitary system.
Meanwhile, the media forum was participated in by at least 150 local and national media practitioners across the region and information officers from various regional line agencies.
Together with Professor Eric Daniel de Torres, a member of the Study Group on Federalism and DILG-2 regional Director Jonathan Paul M. Leusen Jr., the four consultative committee commissioners also served as panelists during the open forum.
On the second day of the Federalism Roadshow tomorrow (Sept. 27), a meeting will be held to discuss various issues and concerns from different sectors of the communities on the proposed Federal Constitution. In the afternoon, a political rally will be conducted during the federalism convention to be spearheaded by various stakeholders, Local Government Units, sectoral groups and other supporters of Federalism and constitutional reforms. (MDCT/OTB/PIA-Cagayan)
Source: PIA Feed