MANILA, July 5 (Mabuhay) — President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Vice-President Sara Duterte-Carpio will not benefit from the passage of a proposed measure seeking constitutional amendments which would allow the president and vice president to seek reelection, Pampanga 3rd District Rep. Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales Jr. said on Monday.
“Kung ma-approve ito this 19th Congress, mags-start ito sa 2025. Nasa midterm ang ating Pangulo at ating Vice-President. Sa palagay ko di na sila pwede tumakbo dito,” Gonzales, author of House Resolution No. 1, said.
“Kaya ang sabi ko, former presidents di na sila pwede tumakbo dito sa bagong batas,” he added.
Last week, Gonzales revived a resolution he filed from the 17th and 18th Congress which seeks to cut the terms of the president and vice president to five years but allows them to seek reelection once.
This deviates from the 1987 Constitution which allows a president to only serve for one term of six years without reelection.
Further, Gonzales also wants to “modify” the term of office of members of the House of Representatives, both district and party-list representatives, and local executive officials, except senators and barangay elective officials.
The Pampanga Representative stressed that changes to the term limits were more vital amid the pandemic as there was a need for “continuity” in the government’s COVID-19 response and programs.
The lawmaker likewise defended the measure against critics, arguing it was not “self-serving” because the legislation would not apply to officials serving their last terms, including him.
“Definitely in my case, hindi self-serving ‘yan. As I’ve said this is my last term. Maswerte ‘yung mga second term mayroon po silang natitirang isang term so they can still run in the positions pero kung ma-approve ito ang termino nila is 5 years lang. That’s their last term. Sa mga first-terms, ganoon din po. Bale, incumbent ka ngayon, you are in your 2nd term and then maguire-elect ka that’s your last term for five years,” he said.
For his part, political analyst Edmund Tayao said a single term for a president is “not really advisable” stressing that other countries that imposed the reform have taken to it.
“The single term is not really advisable. Especially that immediately when you elect a president, there’s a lack of mechanism by which the people can get back and have him accountable for a second term,” Tayao said. (MNS)