Press Release
September 8, 2006


In the wake of the administrations moves to change the charter, Senator Edgardo J. Angara today opined that there is not enough time for such since elections are just barely a year away.

Maybe, its already late for the administration to push for cha-cha right now because general elections are comingunless of course, the government cancels the 2007 elections. But certainly, charter change is imperative. In fact, we should have done it yesterday, Angara said.

I always believe in charter change because it is probably the only way out of our gridlock politics. But, I think, that doesnt stand any chance today because between now and the elections in May is only less than nine months. If the country were an expectant mother, she wont be able to deliver an infant who is healthy and strong with the little time she has, he continued.

Angara also suggested that legislators should concentrate on making sound and reasonable laws and should break free from supporters of charter change.

Sure, we are moving. But we are moving slow and more Filipinos are now getting poorer. More Filipinos are leaving the country. I think we should postpone ChaCha and concentrate on what we should be doing as legislators, and then prepare for the elections of 2007. Then, we will pit forces again and let the people judge whether the incumbent or the opposition is worthier to support, Angara commented.

Angara also said that allowing the 2007 elections unfold will yield the newly-elected government officials more time to clearly amend the charter; for the government officials have secured fresh-new mandates in their terms.

Lets just wait for the 2007 elections so that the newly-elected senators, congressmen, governors, mayors who have the fresh mandate will be the ones to change the charter, Angara continued.

Angara noted that due to the highly-centralized and restrictive system of government, there are limited job opportunities in the country today.

Unless we do something drastic, unless we reform our government system, unless we improve our investment laws and unless we preserve our cultural and historical heritage, we wont be able to create enough jobs to absorb the 700 young people who enter the job market every year, Angara said.

If our problems are joblessness, low income, high prices of goods, then, in order to fight poverty, majority of our efforts should be geared towards job creationextend credit, micro-finance, and build infrastructures, he continued.

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