Federal gov't only an option in House draft charter: analyst


Posted at Oct 10 2018 09:40 AM

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MANILA - The creation of a federal government is only an option under the House of Representatives' draft constitution, according to a research fellow who did a study on federalism.

Michael Henry Yusingco, an Ateneo School of Government fellow, said the draft does not include any guarantee of federalism, the original goal of the administration's push for charter change.

"In the proposed House draft, there is no such guarantee in the Constitution. In fact, there is only a chance to create federated states," he told ANC on Wednesday.

"They (the regions) still have to file a petition before the Congress. It's still just a chance. It's not a guarantee that they can become a federated state," he added.

This is a major difference from the draft charter proposed by President Rodrigo Duterte's Consultative Committee, which identified federated regions.

Yusingco also pointed out that the draft charter, endorsed by House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, does not even mention the Bangsamoro and the Cordillera regions.

The lawyer was part of a study group that analyzed "fiscal imbalance" that might arise between the national and regional governments under a federal structure.