Press Release
April 25, 2009

Pia: Cha-cha ringleaders setting bad examples for the youth

Senate opposition member Pia S. Cayetano today said members of the House of Representatives pushing for Resolution 1109, which seeks to unilaterally convene a constituent assembly to amend the 1987 Constitution, are engaging in a useless and dangerous political experiment that disregards the more urgent needs and problems of our country and people.

The ringleaders of this group personify the callousness of the Arroyo administration. We are facing an acute economic crisis and experts have warned of a flat economic growth rate this year and severe joblessness in the coming months, but what are they doing? Still trying to come up with their concocted schemes of amending the Constitution for the purpose of term extension.

Cayetano also criticized Resolution 737 containing House Speaker Prospero Nograles fourth mode of Cha-cha, which the House has started taking up in plenary debates. Using the regular legislative process of passing bills and laws, the resolution seeks to amend Article 12, Sections 2 and 3 of the Constitution to allow full foreign participation in the exploitation of natural resources, as well as ownership of agricultural land.

The Constitution clearly provides for only three modes for amending the Constitution. There is no fourth, stressed the lady solon, a lawyer.

How do we expect our people to obey the law when their lawmakers are the ones trying to circumvent it? We teach our children that the Constitution is the fundamental law of the land, but how can the House simply disregard this? They are setting a bad example for our people and the youth, she added.

Two days ago, National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Director-General Ralph Recto stated that the Philippines will be delayed in achieving its Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). If we do not pool our resources and focus on our real problems and instead insist on this useless exercise in Cha-cha, then we might as well give up on achieving our MDGs, she concluded.

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