MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte's consultative committee that made a draft federal charter will be given ample time to explain their output, a senator leading an inquiry into the proposed constitutional amendments assured.
Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan said his committee will continue to hold hearings so other advocates of charter change will also be given time to explain their views on the proposed shift to federalism.
"Tuloy pa rin. When we have clarifications doon sa mga provisions ng batas ng kanilang panukalang draft, titignan natin. Hindi pa naman tapos ang ating mga hearings," Pangilinan told reporters following yesterday's hearing which ended at around 8:00 p.m.
Consultative committee members joined the hearing, including retired Supreme Court Justice Jose Antonio Nachura who asked senators to give them more time to explain the draft charter, as survey results show more Filipinos oppose charter change "now."
Pangilinan said the Senate will not rush charter change. He is also looking forward to seeing a clearer direction of the Senate after the "all-senators’ caucus" to be called by Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto III.
In the end, Pangilinan said his committee wants to determine if charter change that would allow a shift to federalism is truly needed, what is the public’s sentiment on this matter and what amendments are needed if ever.