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Authoritarian democracy




 “L’etat c’est moi.” (I am the state) —

the “sun king”, Louis XIV

By Hector R. R. Villanueva

Hector R. R. Villanueva

Though it seems like a contradiction in terms, it is actually the situation the country is in, as the autocratic style of governance of President Roa Duterte is tempered by a modest window of democratic dissent and free speech.

With the overwhelming electoral victory of the administration in the Senate and Palace-controlled House of Representatives, the new mandate of PDU30 opens new challenges and new vista for Pres. Duterte to pursue his vision for the country.

With his health permitting and with congressional support, President Duterte can now pursue with greater vigor his unfinished business and electoral promises, such as, constitutional reforms-federalism, the death penalty, ongoing war against drug trafficking, corruption and insurgency.

With less than three years to go and presidential elections just around the corner, President Digong cannot afford to fritter away his strategic advantage and satisfaction ratings on mundane affairs and peripheral issues.

To start with, the foundations of a federal system are now achievable even it will take generations to perfect the system in an archipelagic landscape.

Moreover, the death penalty must be restored for heinous crimes, such as, drug trafficking, treason, rape, and premeditated murder.

Economic plunder should be exempted as easily prone to abuse and manipulation.

As Napoleon once remarked, every nation must have relations but within the control of the state.

While the Catholic Church is adamantly against the death penalty and other issues, such as pollution, abortion, and divorce, it is about time that the Church be placed in its place, and allow the state to do its job in the national interest.

Constitutional reforms should be the high water mark of the Duterte administration.

Apart from the need to a reform the economic provisions in the 1987 Constitution, the time as come — although unlikely to happen — to shift to a parliamentary form of government which will not only automatically lift term limits but will also pave the way and assure the nation of continuity of governance which is essential for sustainable growth and stability.

Summing up, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte faces formidable challenges

You be the judge.

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