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Alvarez’s no-election initiative not about federalism but dictatorship – Colmenares

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By JOHN CARLO M. CAHINHINAN

Former Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Neri Colmenares slammed the proposed moved by the House leadership to change the present constitution using ​a people’s initiative.

The former lawmaker stressed that the proposal of House Speaker Pantelon Alvarez is not just about federalism but rather term extensions and the cancellation of next year’s mid-term elections.

“This is not about federalism but about dictatorship,” said Colmenares.

Colmenares ​also ​said the move for Charter change via ​p​eople’s ​i​nitiative was a useless move because it has been expressly disallowed by the 1987 Constitution which states that only through Constituent Assembly (Con-Ass) and Constitutional Convention (Con-Con) can revise the constitution

He said​ the S​upreme Cour​ has ruled that people’s initiative can only insert some amendments but not to the point of overhauling the entire charter.

“This move is also disallowed by the Supreme Court in the case of Lambino vs Comelec where the Court said people’s initiative can only amend a provision of the Constitution but not a revision such as a shift from presidential to parliamentary,” said Colmenares.

He added the same goes for shift from unitary to federal which entails the amendment of many provisions and can only be done either through Con-Ass or Con-Con​.

“We ask the proponents of People’s Initiative to desist from pushing it, not only because it is unconstitutional, but also because it is self​-​serving and anti​-​people,” said Colmenares.