Public pressure needed to include anti-dynasty provision - Pimentel
MANILA - A self-executing anti-political dynasty provision, which wouldn't require legislation, can be included in the new charter, according to the Senate President, who also heads the ruling PDP-Laban political party pushing for federalism.
But Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III said the burden is on the public to pressure lawmakers, a lot of whom are members of dynasties themselves, to include such provision as they amend the 1987 Constitution.
"In the Philippines, since we are already amending the Constitution, so why omit that self-executing anti-political dynasty provision? I don't think we need to debate whether to have it or not," he told ANC in a taped interview.
"We just have to to pressure the decision-makers in this constitutional change procedure to adopt such beneficial provision. There must be pressure, hence people must be interested and there must be vigilance on the part of the people," he added.
A son and namesake of a former Senate president himself, Pimentel allayed fears that a shift to a federal form of government would strengthen powerful political families, especially in the regions.
The senator said these political clans would weaken as their "areas of control" will be enlarged under the proposed government system, making them vulnerable to the dynasties in other provinces who will seek to gain power in a new federal state.
"The enlarged area, which we call a region, it can possibly be a political dynasty in one province versus another political dynasty in another province. Hence, there is even a natural check. It's a political dynasty versus political dynasty," he said.
"If we let them battle then we weaken them. Ultimately they will both be weakened enough that there will no longer be political dynasty in the region," the Senate President added.