‘Be transparent with Charter change’
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang called for “transparency” in efforts at the House of Representatives to amend the Constitution, as it said those campaigning against the move were also free to do so.
“The Palace is in favor of transparency in the House of Representatives’ handling of Charter change moves and initiatives so that the public will be properly appraised of its plans and motives behind them, and correspondingly, be able to form a sober, objective and intelligent judgment on such [a] vital issue,” Presidential Political Adviser Gabriel Claudio said in a statement.
Various student organizations, including the League of Filipino Students (LFS), College Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP), National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP), Akbayan, and Student Christian Movement launched on Monday a signature drive opposing efforts to rewrite the charter.
“We do not take issue [against] groups forming themselves into anti-cha-cha [charter change] forces. People’s vigilance on the cha-cha issue is not something we resent or consider undesirable,” Claudio said.
Pro-administration lawmakers, including President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s eldest son, Pampanga Representative Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo, have been courting their colleagues to sign a resolution that would convene a constituent assembly to amend the 1987 Constitution.
Arroyo’s critics said the charter change effort could be part of a ploy to keep her in power beyond the end of her term in 2010.
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