Progressive Solon Calls for Vigilance amid Postponement of Con-Ass
Congress should not
waste time locked up on the contentious proposal for a Con-Ass as there
are more pressing issues that should be addressed, an activist congressman
Rep. Crispin Beltran
of Anakpawis (toiling masses) party-list called Dec. 9 the postponement of
the convening of the controversial Constituent Assembly “a victory for the
Filipino people who are united in opposing Con-Ass.”
Beltran, who is detained at a government hospital in Quezon City for
rebellion charges since February this year, was reacting to reports that
House Speaker Jose de Venecia has announced the postponement of Con-Ass
and the holding of the May 2007 elections as scheduled.
pro-Arroyo colleagues at the House railroaded the passage of House
Resolution 1450 providing for the convening of Con-Ass with or without the
participation of the Senate.
Most members of the
Senate are opposed to the move, saying that the proposal to convert
Congress into a constituent assembly to revise or amend the 1987 charter
should be voted upon separately by the two chambers.
But Beltran said the
House speaker’s move to postpone Con-Ass for one week “could very well
stretch to months…It may well be that the Con-Ass is dead."
It does not matter if
de Venecia and the pro-administration legislators postpone the convening
of Con-Ass by a week. "The public is now on red alert against it, prepared
to mount the broadest and most militant opposition against Con-Ass in
particular, and charter change in general,” he said.
“There are more
urgent and important issues that should be addressed such as increasing
unemployment, the worsening state of human rights, and the general
deterioration of the quality of life of majority of Filipinos. There also
remains the issue of the culpability of the executive on the charges of
electoral fraud and corruption. Amending the constitution is nothing but a
distraction from these more urgent matters," he said.
congressman appealed to church and religious leaders as well as other
special interest groups to thumb down all moves to amend the Constitution
at this time.
Beltran said that the
public clamor remains for the measures that will give immediate economic
and political relief to the poor and working people such as substantial
wage and salary increases for public and private sector workers; the
scrapping of the oil deregulation law and the privatization in the oil
industry, and the arrest and punishment of the perpetrators behind the 798
political and extra-judicial killings. Bulatlat
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© 2006 Bulatlat
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