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I don’t know how many people will be in town to read this column as I am sure the beaches from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao will be full of people especially in Boracay. Almost everyone will probably out of town focusing more on the three R’s (relaxation, recreation and reflection) and would probably return to their homes and daily routines at the end of Holy Week. This is why I would prefer to greet you on the day when you might probably have the chance to read this column, which is on Easter Sunday.
I normally hear mass in Urdaneta and sit in front so as not to be distracted. The sermon I heard during mass was basically a well-written pastoral letter. The letter talked about a timely topic for all Filipinos which is to reflect on the changes that really need to happen in order for our country to move forward. While a number of Filipinos want to remove PGMA for corruption, I always tell them that every Filipino has the right to due process. The proper venue for all these investigations is the courts. The pastoral letter calls on everyone to reflect on how corruption has been part of the whole system. We have lived with it for so many generations and if we really want to eradicate corruption, one has to look at our values system. The temptation to corrupt has always been there and this is why you see the tax amnesty coming back every now and then. The pastoral letter also talked about corruption that has gone down to local government and how we can get rid of it. We need to look at the system that brings greater temptation and correct it. This is not to say that this is all what is needed to get it done since the people that are part of the system are also important. We also need to elect good leaders and people who have high moral values. If you put people in the wrong system, it takes a person with high moral values to not be sucked into the wrong system. We need to elect good people who are capable and we need a good system that prevents corruption.
In recent weeks, I have carried the proposition in this column the idea of 2010.2016, as our way to have a lasting systemic change that will bring more stability in the country. This has become very important especially for me and some of our colleagues in the business sector if we are to make the country move forward.
What we propose in concept, which can be fine tuned by the legal luminaries of the land, is to have a 2010.2016 approach. What does it mean? It simply means proposing for the election of the Con-Con together with the Presidential election in 2010, wherein the Con-Con shall be tasked to review the constitution and study thoroughly the feasibility of having a shift in the form of government towards Parliamentary form. Any proposed changes shall be ratified, and the necessary implementation and election of new set of officials shall take place in 2016.
However, we all know that any talk in the past of amending the constitution invite objections and accusations on any incumbent administration that it is supposedly using that as a ploy to prolong one’s stay in power. I believe that if we remove all these concerns and focus on the rationale of reviewing the Constitution and even the form of government, we could find a solution on how we can approach a more systemic change. Like entrepreneurs, if we set our minds and heart to it, we can find a better way.
Setting the longer timetable allows a more thorough review by the Con-Con. It should also remove any doubt that any incumbent leadership is behind the move and has a vested interest on it since a clearly defined timetable is set. In fact, what I have been attempting to do in recent days is to bounce off the proposal to as many sectors as possible and even to what I can consider anti- or critical to the current government. Many groups have understood the rationale and it seems there is a good level of acceptance. They see objectivity in the process and one that cannot be used by the incumbent or whoever will win in the 2010 election as the change in the system will not apply to them.
Basic views have been expressed towards the benefit of having a broader representation in the Parliament. We can expect more dynamic sectoral interest groups that will have their respective agenda for development. We can see greater teamwork as well as the executive and legislative will come from the same chamber, and that the Prime Minister’s team will come from the members who are also elected officials.
We have so far generated support to the idea and hopefully reach out to other sectors in the society so that we can improve on the proposal as we go along. I guess the bottomline is to have a better system that will bring in more stability and a better negosyo climate for the Filipinos.
Let me share with you other comments that came in on this topic:
I agree 100 percent about this proposal although for me I prefer it with a ceremonial (or unifying?) President but the Prime Minister will of course run the government. This is more realistic with regards to Filipino mindset of electing a President.
Dear Mr. Joey Concepcion;
I do agree with your statement regarding the ZTE controversies, I think the senators have no knowledge making nor passing the important laws the country needs. We are all paying our income tax and those taxes went only to those Senate Imbestigador. I agree to have a parliamentary form of government and abolish the Senate and the Congress too which have much overhead and expenses. I also wonder why there is no Audit Report regarding their Pork Barrel or Countryside Development Fund. While Senator Pimentel are asking to audit the League City Fund. We, the tax paying citizen need an Audit Report of all the funds they used not only the President, all the politicians who spend our taxes. Thanks and God Bless.
I’m an avid reader and fan to your column. I agree with your suggestion that we should have a parliamentary form of government. Definitely bureaucracy in the government will surely be eliminated and we will see government officials more focused on their jobs. What we see right now in the government is full of power-grabber and hungry-for-money type of people.
As a citizen, I don’t want to see my country going down because of these people. Changes should be made as well as sacrifice ourselves for a better Philippines. I wish to see a new Philippines with a new hope and a brighter future to look forward to.
Right now, every election is something that I can’t help but think of how much they spent just to get the position they wanted. Sana darating ang panahon that when I go to the precinct to cast my vote I will be doing it with hi hopes and be proud of exercising my right as a Filipino.
Mabuhay! Good luck to us all!
Thanks to all who have expressed their views and gave suggestions. All of your comments/suggestions will be considered in future deliberations. Please continue to send your responses via email at email@example.com or thru sms at 09175591245.
We are still open for entries on the search for the Nokia Mobile Entrepreneur Awards. The award is open to all Filipino citizens who are at least 18 years of age, use a mobile technology product or service as the primary component of their business, have a business license to operate and utilize legal mobile product or service and engaged in that business for at least a year. For more information, log on to www.nokia.com.ph or www.gonegosyo.net or call (632) 637-9229. Deadline for submission of entries is on March 31,2008.
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