Romualdez urges support for federalism to speed up growth INQUIRER.net

Romualdez urges support for federalism to speed up growth Featured

MANILA, Philippines — Incoming Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez reaffirmed on Wednesday his commitment to advancing constitution reforms and urged Filipinos to support President Rodrigo Duterte in his pursuit of shifting to federalism.

In a statement, Romualdez, a lawyer who is president of the Philippine Constitution Association (Philconsa), said federalism would complement the Duterte administration’s efforts to speed up economic growth.

“We will keep our dedication, commitment, passion and the flame burning in pursuing federalism until we reap the real benefits of genuine constitutional reforms for our children and the succeeding generations,” Romualdez, one of the frontrunners in the House speakership race, said.

“I urge my colleagues and the Filipino people to stand behind President Duterte and help push a federal Constitution to create opportunities and for strong economic growth to be felt also by ordinary people,” he added. “The federalism advocacy of President Duterte is a golden opportunity to unlock the doors of peace, progress and prosperity of the country and the people.”

Last December, the House of Representatives — voting 224-22, with three abstentions — approved on third and final reading its version of a federal constitution under Resolution of Both Houses No. 15, of which Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is one of the principal authors.

Romualdez, the House independent bloc leader during the 16th Congress during the Aquino administration, also renewed Philconsa’s commitment to defend and protect the 1987 Constitution.

“Let us join hands to maintain the pristine supremacy of the Constitution,” said Romualdez, who will serve his fourth term as Leyte congressman in the incoming 18th Congress.

According to Romualdez, president of the Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (CMD), the 58-year-old Philconsa remains very supportive of the President’s federalism initiative.

“I am proud to say that the Philconsa has become the premier marketplace for the healthy and vibrant exchange of ideas, perceptions and insights on constitutional issues affecting public interest,” he said. “We have been doing this consistently with our aim to incite and stimulate awareness, respect and obedience to the Constitution.”

“The Philconsa is a classic paragon of democracy,” he added. “It encourages everyone to say his piece, and out of this composite of ideas, insights and impressions, we hope to reach a consensus on what is good and what is best for our country and our people.”

Aside from Romualdez, among the legal luminaries of Philconsa are retired Court of Appeals Justice Manuel “Lolong” Lazaro as chairman and former Chief Justice Reynato Puno as president emeritus.


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