There is a major shift on camps. After publicly advising churchgoers not to vote for Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, it seemed that the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) is behind his back when it comes to a Constitutional Convention (Con-Con).
Even during his campaign, Duterte championed the revision of the Philippine Constitution through a Constitutional Convention. This is different from the constitutional assembly proposed by Congress years ago.
Bishop Emeritus Teodoro Bacani of the Diocese of Novaliches said that via Con-Con reflects the views of the people.
“Sa Constitutional Convention hindi tumututol ang simbahan, open tayo sa isang Constitutional Convention, ang kinalaban ng simbahan noon ay ang constitutional change through the Congress mismo, sila mismo ang magdetermina ang maganda dyan,” he said over Radyo Veritas.
(The Church does not oppose a Constitutional Convention, we are open to it and what we are countering is a constitutional change through Congress where the lawmakers themselves decide on issues.)
Duterte revealed his administration’s 8-point economic plan, which includes amending parts of the Constitution, especially on foreign investments. The Constitution currently restricts foreign ownership to 40 percent of certain businesses.
However, Bacani stressed that the Con-Con should include representative from various sectors of society.
“Kung merong ganyan na magiging representative ng mga tao hindi tayo tututol diyan sapagkat ang konstitusyon sabi nga ay isang buhay na dokumento yan hindi patay at dapat na i-akma sa pangangailangan ng panahon at kung may nakita na mga provision na hindi na nakakatulong o less helpful sa ngayon kinakailangan ng palitan na kahit na may constitutional means,” he said.
(If we will have representatives of the people we will not object because the Constitution, as they say, is a document that has its own life. We should adapt to the changing times and if we see provisions that are not helpful or less helpful, we should change it even through constitutional means.)