Press Release
January 7, 2021

Pangilinan: All-senators' caucus to discuss how to move forward on Charter change resolution

AN ALL-SENATORS' caucus will discuss how to move forward on the Senate resolution to amend the 1987 Constitution, said Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments and Revision of Codes and Laws.

"Katulad ng mga ginawa natin noong nakaraang Kongreso, pinakamaiging pag-usapan ito sa all-senators' caucus at sana magkaroon ng consensus kung ano ang direksyon (As was our approach in the previous Congress, it would be best if the matter be tackled and discussed first in an all Senators Caucus wherein a consensus as to how to move forward hopefully can be reached)," he said when asked about it.

"In fairness to the Charter change proponents the resolution was filed prior to the PSG vaccine controversy," he said, referring to the controversy of the Presidential Security Group receiving a Covid vaccine from China still to be tested and approved by the Food and Drug Administration for safety and efficacy.

Pangilinan raised concerns about the timing of the resolution, noting that all-government focus must be on controlling and managing the disease so that the country can get back on its feet.

"Kasama sa pag-uusapan sa caucus ay ang timing ng Charter amendments, lalo na at hindi pa rin nasusugpo ang Covid at dapa pa rin ang ekonomiya natin (Among the issues that can be discussed in the caucus would be the timing of charter amendments considering that the country is facing the worst economic and health crisis in recent memory)," Pangilinan said.

"Ngayon ba ang tamang panahon para pag-usapan ito? In addition is the matter of Congress voting jointly or separately in proposing Charter amendments," he added.

Asked if he would request for an all-senators' caucus, Pangilinan said: "Ipinapaubaya ko sa liderato ng Senado ang desisyon na 'yan (I leave it to the Senate leadership to decide on the matter of an all-senators' caucus)."

On whether he would conduct public consultations similar to the ones he conducted in the last Congress, Pangilinan said: "Depende sa resulta ng mapag-usapan sa caucus. Pakikinggan muna natin ang mga sentimiento ng mga kapwa senador (It would depend on the discussions during the caucus. Let's hear out the sentiments of our fellow senators)."

Past survey results showed that a sizeable majority of Filipinos are opposed to changing the 1987 Constitution. Earlier, several House leaders met and announced that the Chamber is gearing to revive deliberations on Charter change. The hearing could be set next week, they said.

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