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Rm. N-411, House of Representatives, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
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I vote “No” to Resolution of Both Houses No. 2 on the so-called economic cha-cha for the following reasons:

  1. This charter change initiative is defective in form and deficient in substance. As to form, it is not compliant with Article XVII of the Constitution wherein there are only three (3) recognized modes of proposing amendments to the Constitution, namely:

    1. The Congress of the Philippines acting as a Constituent Assembly;

    2. A Constitutional Convention called by the Congress where the delegates are elected by the people; and

    3. People’s Initiative under certain terms and conditions.

  2. RBH No. 2 proposes amendments to the Constitution wherein the House of Representatives and the Senate will submit proposed amendments directly for ratification without passing any of the three (3) modes.

  3. It is also deficient in substance because the proposed amendment reading “unless otherwise provided by law” will allow the Congress to amend the Constitution with unlimited discretion by legislation on the details of liberalizing the economic restrictions in the Constitution.

  4. The contingent legislation does not give the people at the time of the ratification of the proposed amendments on the metes and bounds of the substantial amendments to the Constitution which will be effected by Congress through ordinary legislation. 

  5. The liberalization of the so-called restrictive economic provisions in the Constitution by legislation will remove the special protection to Filipino capital and entrepreneurs and will derogate the preservation of the national economy for posterity.

  6. Moreover, there is no need to remove the so-called restrictive economic provisions in the Constitution to encourage the entry of foreign direct investments if the Philippines is able to resolutely address the composite determinants of FDIs like ease of doing business; infrastructure inadequacy; incidence of corruption; tax regulation and rates; internet speed and power costs; size of the economy and inflation; and predictability of policies.

For all of these fatal infirmities, Resolution of Both Houses No. 2 should be given a decent burial, instead of being resuscitated and approved on third and final reading. The House should give it its last rites instead of transmitting it to the Senate where it will be dead on arrival.