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RANDOM THOUGHTS | The way to the true development

Attention: People of the Philippines

“The Ongoing People’s Initiative (PI) group is a bold move of some interested group.” (Chito R. Gavino III)


Our flawed, irresponsible and inadequate 1987 Constitution incorporated the People’s Initiative as one of the means to amend our current Constitution. This Constitution was rushly ratified by our people without really reading it. In our case, we voted “Yes” for its adoption so that an election for a new Congress will immediately be held. It is indeed a myth to expect that the majority of Filipinos must know our Constitution before ratifying it. No copies of the new Constitution are available to them in the first place.

Hence, I think the ongoing People’s Initiative will be ratified despite the Senators objection. If so, prepare for a Constituent Assembly with or without the Senate to revise our 1987 Constitution. Of course, this issue will surely reach the Supreme Court. I think that a great majority of our Senators are afraid of an honest-to-goodness Constitutional reform because the Senate may be abolished if a Unicameral Legislature is adopted in the new Constitution.

Interested Filipinos, in this connection, should start discussing what is good for our people and nation – a Presidential form of government as we have now or a Parliament form or a hybrid Presidential-Parliamentary form of government with a strong President patterned after the French model. After my long study of those governmental forms I prefer the hybrid Presidential-Parliamentary form of government. Furthermore, to hasten the legislative process, I prefer a Unicameral Legislature meaning just “one house”. The check and balance here will be left to the existing opposition camp. Most of the Ministers (Department Secretaries) shall come from the members of the Parliament.

With regards to the System of government, let’s shift from a Unitary System to a Philippine-Style Federal System which we have been dreaming of since the time of Rizal and Mabini. “A Federal System is the answer to Mindanao secession”, per former Assemblyman Reuben Canoy of Cagayan de Oro. This is also the political platform of Partido Demokrasyang Pilipino (PDP) and the Federal Party of the Philippines (FPP) of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. Let’s not miss this golden opportunity for a truly “Bagong Pilipinas” with “Bagong Konstitusyong Federal!”

A Federal System follows the social doctrine principles of Subsidiarity, Solidarity, Participatory, Just Distribution of Material Goods, and the Common Good. It is the most decentralized, democratic, and inclusive political system in the whole world. Per former assemblyman Reuben Canoy, “Federalism is the answer to Mindanao Secession. I believe the same. But there will be no Federal System after the term of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., the “Mindanao Independence” will certainly be a good alternative for Mindanaons seeking peace and prosperity in their rich “left-behind” island. Will there be a Constitutional crisis if this People’s Initiative to amend our Constitution succeeds? Undoubtedly, a sort of chaos, in Congress, is one of the negative consequences of this P.I. The “PIRMA” group, however, seems “hell bent” in pushing through the P.I. There could also be some problems that could beset the COMELEC with regards to the forth-coming 2025 local election. Calling Malacañang on this nagging issue of P.I.

Another if. If this case of P.I. reaches the Supreme Court, I think, our S.C. will rule that this P.I. is a political question which is, therefore not within the preview of the Court. This confirms the then comment of Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz that, “the practice of politics in the Philippines is very harmful to our people.” Well what do we expect from our many “self-serving politicians”, per Alex Lacson. Clearly, we now badly need a good “People Renewal” Program. I think that it was Matthew Kelly who rightly pointed out that, “To effectively change a nation, first change the mindset and behavior of people!” How true.
Our government is very remiss in this regard. With all the bright boys in this administration, no one ever proposed to President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to formulate and launch an honest-to-goodness “People Renewal” Program. Hence “business as usual” in our government. How sad.

“Hope springs eternal”, a wise man/woman once said. Our “hope” in this regard is the acceptance recently of this challenging task by the “Samal Eagles Club” to implement nationwide a “People Renewal” Program called “Be a New Filipino.” PBBM’s vision of “Bagong Pilipinas” to succeed, demands “Bagong mga Filipinos.” NEDA should list this down as one of the priority programs of PBBM this 2024. Total Integral Human Development is sorrowfully missing in NEDA’s mind. PBBM slogan of “Build Better More” should give much attention to “Character Building” of our greatest capital which is our people! This is the right way to true development.

“Asking the right questions is an effective way to evaluate certain important proposals or acquire knowledge.” This is the Socrates method. If my memory serves me right, per then President Ferdinand E. Marcos, Sr., when confronted with an important proposal, the two questions that he usually asked were: “Is it moral? Is it legal?” Below are my additional suggested questions that I think should be asked:

What are your Vision and Mission?
What are your goals and objectives?
What are your core values?
What were the principles you used?
What are the costs?
Will this be beneficial to our people and nation?
How will this benefit the poor?
Will this promote peace and prosperity?
Is this just?
Is this the best way to go?
Are there other options?
How will this impact the environment?
Will this promote unity?
Will this lead to the common good?
How can we effectively implement this?
Is there a consensus on this proposal?
Can we afford this?
Will this promote health and wellness?
Is this competitive?
What innovation can we introduce?
What is your time frame?
Is it timely?
Is this a short or medium or long-ranged program?


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