Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.
PHOTO BY ARCHIVE
MANILA – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he will not insist on pushing for federalism but will prefer to make changes to the Constitution.
“If you do not want federalism, fine,” Duterte said in a speech during the oath-taking of newly elected senators and officials in Malacanang on Tuesday.
“But change the Constitution that would really change this nation,” he added.
Duterte has been pushing for a federal form of government, which he believes will spur development in the countryside.
The Philippine president has said he will accept it if the move towards federalism will not happen during his administration.
The House of Representatives has already created a draft federal constitution, however, the Senate has repeatedly said that federalism is not among its priorities.
Duterte has formed a Consultative Committee made up of experts who completed the proposed Bayanihan Federal Constitution last year.
Under the proposed charter, political dynasties, monopolies and oligopolies are banned. The draft charter also proposes 18 federal regions composed of 16 symmetrical regions and two asymmetrical regions Bangsamoro and Cordillera. DAJ/Expat Media
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