Palace can only persuade Congress on draft federalism, Roque says
Malacanang said on Tuesday it "can only persuade" his allies in Congress to support the draft federalism that the Consultative Committee prepared.
The Committee headed by retired Chief Justice Reynato Puno is set to submit to President Rodrigo Duterte the draft federalism on July 9.
Asked what Duterte would do after the Consultative Committee submits the draft federal form of government, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the president, as chairman of the ruling PDP-Laban, the dominant party in the House of Representatives, would transmit it to his party mates.
"And he will encourage his party mates to study it very closely and if possible to pattern the proposed revisions after what the Commission has recommended. But ultimately, of course, it is the members of Congress who will approve whether or not they will adopt the proposed revisions," he said.
"In that sense, we can only persuade the party mates of the president," Roque added.
He said the Palace recognizes the decision on the proposed federalism ultimately lies in the individual members of the House of Representatives and the Senate.
"We have a super majority in the House. I think at least in the House it would be very persuasive ‘no. We are hoping to be equally persuasive in the Senate," he said.
Duterte has been pushing for a shift to a federal government from a presidential form.
He created the committee to come up with the changes in the 1987 Constitution in order to shift to federalism. Celerina Monte/DMS