Palace ignorant of Mandanas resolution
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang said it had no prior knowledge of a resolution filed in Congress that seeks to postpone the 2010 elections and extend President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s term until 2011.
Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita said he conferred with Presidential Adviser on Political Affairs Gabriel Claudio and the Palace legislative liaison, Joaquin Lagunera, and they both said that Batangas Representative Hermilando Mandanas, the resolution’s author, did not consult them.
House Resolution 550 was uncovered during a hearing Tuesday on a resolution to convene lawmakers into a constituent assembly to amend the 1987 Constitution.
“We were not consulted about the resolution by Congressman Mandanas,” Ermita said. “Hindi namin talaga alam [We really did not know about it].”
Ermita said lawmakers were “acting on their own as elected officials.”
Asked if the Palace would ask Mandanas to withdraw his resolution, Ermita said: “Hindi ko naman gagawin yan [I won’t do that]. [I could be accused of] being too presumptuous to say that’s the instruction of the President.”
On Tuesday, Deputy Presidential Spokesman Anthony Golez said the Palace would “block” moves to extend the terms of incumbent officials, including the President, but would leave the matter of Charter change to Congress.
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