“Kapag bago ang Constitution, I will insist, ‘no party list.’ Inabuso lahat ‘yan,”
This is what President Rodrigo Duterte said after he announced that he wanted to abolish the party-list system that made organizations participate in the congress for 30 years because of being ‘anti-poor’
Duterte said that rich Filipinos who wanted to get a seat to the congress can easily create an association or group to convince the citizens to vote for them and become a representative despite of not being really belong to that sector.
“Kasi ito ‘yung pera, kahit ano diyan mabili mo, United Idiots Association. Tatakbo. Nagkalat kayo diyan,” said the President.” The President said after visiting his wounded men in an ambush by NPA rebels in Davao Del Norte.
“I will not allow it…inabuso lahat yan ehang nananalo ay yong may pera.. .Representing what? The security guards?” Duterte said on Friday.
Duterte was apparantly talking about the party-list ‘Ang Galing Pinoy’, a group of security guards and tricycle driver formerly represented by Mikey Arroyo.
The Commission on Elections disqualified the party list of Arroyo in 2013, after it was ruled that the representative of the party list did not belong to the sector that he represent.
He described the party-list system as a ‘mockery of law’.
“That’s the mockery of the law. ‘Yan talaga ang pinaka bastos na nagawa mo. Kasi ikaw, ‘yung pera, mag-bili ka ng ano diyan? Ano ba ‘yung ano mo? United idiots association,” Duterte said.
He also said that he would not allow an ‘anti-Filipino’ system in the new constitution.
The President also said that the administration decided to amend the Constitution via constituent assembly(con-ass), because constitutional convention(con-con) would be costly.
Duterte stressed that his will to push federalism in the country is the same with his will to destroy illegal drugs in the country.
“Are you not really worried about what happens to the next generation? Have you not thought about your children? You will destroy the next generation,” the President said, noting the need for peace, to eradicate illegal drugs and to combat terrorism in the country,” he said.
However, a former party list representative, believes that the party-list system is better to be reform than to abolish.
Former Bayan Muna Representative Neri Colmenares said that he agree of what Duterte said about the abuse of some rich people to the party-list system, but he said that the President Duterte must only reform the it and not abolish it.
“Genuine pro-people party-list groups have considerably contributed to checking abuse and corruption in government. What is needed is to amend the law to ensure that seats allotted for the party-list system are not taken by fake groups from the rich and the powerful,” Colmenares said.
20% of the seats in the congress were reserved for the party-list system representatives. The Party-list system was created in the 1987 Constitution created by the Cory Aquino administration.
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