By Charissa Luci-Atienza
The House Committee on Constitutional Amendments has rescheduled its hearing on the proposed Federal Constitution submitted by the Consultative Committee (Con-Com) on August 1.
Southern Leyte Rep. Roger Mercado, panel chairman, said the committee decided to “tentatively” reset the hearing from its original schedule, July 25 to August 1.
The change in the committee hearing schedule was prodded by the election of first woman Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
“We will have to wait and see for leadership guidance,” Mercado said in an interview.
He maintained that the mandate of his panel is to study the recommendations made by the Con-Com, chaired by former Chief Justice Reynato Puno.
Deputy Speaker and Capiz Rep. Fredenil Castro said he has no qualms that under Arroyo’s watch, the House will push for the President’s legislative agenda.
“I am sure, she will push the legislative agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte,” he said in a separate interview.
Duterte earlier asked his critics of not to put a price tag on his federalism proposal, saying that its projected cost will be outweighed by unquantifiable economic growth and development it would deliver in the country, especially in the countryside.
As he delivered his State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday afternoon, President Duterte expressed confidence that people will “stand behind” his administration’s initiative to amend the 1987 Constitution.
He also stressed that he has no intention to extend his term beyond 2022.