Press Release
December 12, 2006


"The Senate as an institution remained steadfast in spite of efforts to revise the Constitution through a Constituent Assembly. We remain united as a duly elected check and balance on our co-equal branches of government. We will continue to oppose Charter Change because we feel it is not the people's will at this time in our history. We must continue to be vigilant and united in efforts to safeguard the conduct of a Constitutional Convention proposal this coming May."

"I reiterate that we are only open to discussing proposals to change the Constitution, after our people have elected a fresh mandate into office, and possibly, if our new leaders have indeed a clear platform of Charter Change. I would not encourage either a simultaneous election of delegates to a Constitutional Convention, with the senatorial and local elections. Not only would it be costly to conduct a Constitutional Convention right after elections, amounting to almost P2 billion in our already scarce government resources, but electing at least 2 delegates from each congressional district, might just be muddled by local politics and other equally important interests. A separate election for the Constitutional Convention delegates, and a separate debate, long after the May 2007 elections might be better."

"As our legal experts have expressed, the Philippine Constitution would best be deliberated upon, by objective and unhurried deliberation of revisions, by a group of experts who can, not only represent the people's best interests, but also infuse new ideas, on how we can best move our country forward, and if indeed, our prevailing Constitution is the stumbling block to this. What we find though with this week's events is that, there remains a power more tremendous than a body politic, that claims to represent our people's interests, and that is, a united and vigilant citizenry that will continue to be the vanguard of our democracy."

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