Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Unicameral Notes


MANILA, June 12, 2006 (STAR
) By Christina Mendez - Sen. Edgardo Angara said yesterday the country’s "archaic governmental setup" has hindered development and had kept the nation from reaping the benefits of genuine independence.

Speaking yesterday on the eve of Philippine Independence Day, Angara reiterated the need for the country to shift from the presidential to a parliamentary form of government.

"Our government structure is a remnant of our colonial past," he said.

"Seventy-one years after we first adopted the Philippine Constitution, we still have the same administrative setup, the same kind of almost feudalistic system," he said.

Angara is pushing for the devolution and decentralization of powers from the central government to the provinces.

"In essence, we are living in a time warp," he said. "We are governed by a political and administrative arrangement that hampers our growth and pulls us down."

Angara said the people should not only give more power to the provinces and municipalities but also pour in more resources to local governments.

"Indeed power will be useless without corresponding resources," he said.

Full Article: Here


MANILA, JUNE 12, 2006
(STAR) GOTCHA By Jarius Bondoc - Filipinos had always wanted a unicameral legislature. They in fact twice set up one-chamber parliaments, which framed Constitutions and efficiently passed laws. But American colonizers also twice imposed a second "upper chamber". This is contained in no less than the website of the Philippine Senate. Excerpts:

"Although the Philippine Legislature was organized only in 1916, it had deep roots in the past. Long before the Spanish rulers came to the Philippines, the people in their barangays were already governed by a set of rules by their chief. Over the long span of Spanish and American rule, various forms of legislative structures were set up to perpetuate the colonial rulers’ desire to rule the country.

"In the closing years of the Spanish regime, the revolutionary government of Emilio Aguinaldo inaugurated a Congress on September 15, 1898, at the Barasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan. This Congress was later on referred to as the Malolos Congress.

"The Malolos Congress, also known as the Assembly of Representatives, was the lawmaking body of the First Republic. It was a unicameral body composed of representatives, one-third of who were chosen by the officials of the municipalities under the control of the Revolutionary Government, and the others appointed by Aguinaldo to represent areas under the American Army which could not send delegates. The Malolos Congress is best remembered for framing the Malolos Constitution.

Full Article: Here

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