A House master stroke: minority holds on posts

minority block
© REUTERS/Czar Dancel


DUMAGUETE CITY – The minority of the old House block made history by announcing that they will not cross over to the majority block but will remain as the original minority block in the Lower House.

This we see as a political master stroke of a seasoned mind and has happened only for the first time. The reason being that the original minority will temper the entry of the new minority which can only wreak havoc on a shaky Congress.

With the old minority intact, the new minority members (12 of those who abstained the Arroyo vote) cannot flex their muscles and bully the new majority which itself is still disunited.

Disunited in the sense that they come from three minority parties such as the LP, the NPC, and the independent party lists. They are weak, they just united one morning to oust a common “enemy” and that is Bebot Alavarez whom they claim was very insensitive to the needs of their constituents. It was time to bring him down, time to dismantle Alvarez. So they did in just one morning.

Morale of the story: When push comes to shove, you will never know when and how the people will fight back. The SONA morning was the most opportune time and nobody saw it coming except the plotters. It was one time the chismosos of Congress were silenced to secrecy. And they succeeded.

Pres. Duterte is wise. He knows that if he will not hang his gloves on time, he too will be knocked out. So he is preparing his” finer version “ in the person of daughter lawyer Mayor Sarah who, too, has the local touch and strong political will. She can make Speaker Gloria Arroyo a fine prime minister who has the experience and the finesse.

Now it’s time to simmer down and settle to a reality check. With elections coming, it might be a good time to generate debates for the new proposed constitution and see if the people will buy it.

Hilario Davide vs Renato Puno

Except for potshots for or against the new proposed federal constitution, the people at large, especially the thinking sector would like to hear a more spirited and intellectual academic debates about the new proposed charter. What is being drum-beated these days are only generalities and motherhood statements both for and against the new proposed charter.

What the people would like to know more are the fine print or the details because once approved all these details both known and unknown will be implemented and it might be too late in the day to discuss its pros and cons.

And the most credible proponent in that great constitutional debate will be two former chief justices: Hilario Davide and Renato Puno. Their intellectual, credible, and meritorious points should be able to guide the Filipino people on how to vote for or against the new proposed federal constitution.

As of today, it is true that the people do not really know the details of this short constitution which maybe just as be as thick as a major paperback.

When the con com commission visited Dumaguete to announce the launching of its final draft, we were disappointed to know that we could not even see a copy of the proposed constitution.

We in the local media would have been thrilled to ask the con com for the first time about some details of the proposed constitution only to be disappointed having seen none at all. Now the Bangsa Organic Law will be signed during the SONA and we do not even know the details even if we are not covered.

Those outside Mindanao will still be affected because Bangsamoro people will also be travelling to Dumaguete and we do not know the perimeters of their rights and privileges. And before we know it, it is already a law.

So before we start criticizing or praising the new proposed charter, it is best we must insist that an intellectual debate about its pros and cons will be discussed at least exhaustively.

We miss the eloquence of people like the late greats in the senate in the persons of Arturo Tolentino, Jovito Salonga, Jose Ka Pepe Diokno, Claro M. Recto, and Benigno Aquino Jr. because their likes have enlightened the people about the dark side of the moon. What we see today is only the bright side of the moon. But remember it has also its dark side and we don’t know.

So in the spirit of full disclosure, we humbly insist that the people deserve to know more about the pros and con about the new PROPOSED charter.