Former Senate President Franklin Drilon claimed that latest moves to amend the Constitution are part of a “grand deception” allegedly designed to install President Arroyo as prime minister after the 2010 elections.
Drilon said the House Resolution drafted by Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Villafuerte seeking Charter change (Cha-cha) was intended to provide a “justifiable issue” and secure a favorable ruling from the Supreme Court.
He said the action made by Villafuerte, head of President Arroyo’s Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (KAMPI) party, could pave the way for the early implementation of Cha-cha right after the 2010 elections.
Drilon distributed copies of the Villafuerte resolution during the Kapihan sa Sulo breakfast forum on Saturday. He said the Camarines Sur congressman himself distributed copies of the draft resolution during the meeting of the Philippine Bar Association in Makati City last March 18.
Drilon claimed that President Arroyo and her KAMPI party mates apparently refuse to give up their plan to change the form of government to a Parliament even after the 2010 polls.
“The grand plan is for President Arroyo to run for Congress in 2010 and campaign hard for the election of a sympathetic president and KAMPI-dominated House,” Drilon said in a statement.
“Then right after the 2010 elections, the Arroyo-controlled president and the Arroyo-controlled House will push for Charter Change and a shift to a parliamentary form of government so that she can now an aspire to be prime minister and rule the country beside her now-ceremonial president,” Drilon added.
Leading the charge
Former House Speaker Jose de Venecia earlier said that President Arroyo's political allies, led by her two congressman sons, have started a concentrated effort to solicit support for Charter change (cha-cha).
"Ang nagtutulak ng Charter ay ang president ng Kampi (2nd District Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Villafuerte), partido ni President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. Ang nagtutulak ng Charter change ay ang Lakas CMD, si [Speaker Prospero] Nograles, ang dalawang anak niya na congressman na kumukuha ng signature ng mga congressman. Mga political leader nila sa Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao," de Venecia recently told ABS-CBN's morning show, Umagang Kay Ganda.
De Venecia said the political leaders, all allied with Mrs. Arroyo, are going around soliciting support for Charter change "on instructions of President Arroyo."
The former speaker said the administration's Cha-cha campaign has only one agenda: to extend Mrs. Arroyo's term of office, which ends in 2010.
He said Nograles's proposal to amend the 1987 Constitution's economic provision is a "a smoke screen" for Cha-cha and change the system of government from presidential to parliamentary so Mrs. Arroyo can stay in power beyond 2010 as prime minister.