Certifying the anti-political dynasty bill as urgent is a tangible proof of the administration’s desire to dismantle the rule of political dynasties, Senator Kiko Pangilinan said.
“Tagal na nitong nakabinbin. Nakasaad pa sa Saligang Batas. Kailangang sumulong ito sa Kongreso, at mangyayari lang ito kung sasabihin ng Pangulo (It’s long overdue. It is ordered by the Constitution. It has to progress in Congress, and it will only do so with the President’s imprimatur),” said Pangilinan, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments and Revision of Codes.
“There should be a ban on political dynasties to effectively remove the oligarchs in the country.”
The veteran legislator said he agrees with Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon’s observation that there should be a ban on political dynasties to effectively remove the oligarchs in the country.
President Duterte earlier boasted of dismantling oligarchy when a committee at the House of Representatives rejected the franchise application of ABS-CBN resulting in the shutdown of the network.
The seasoned lawmaker said an oligarchy is usually characterized by the control of one family and transfer of power from one generation to the next. As wealth means power and political control, the political elites in the country perpetuate themselves by means of political dynasties.
The senator filed Senate Bill 264 in July last year defining and prohibiting political dynasties. However, as in the past initiatives of some senators, the bill has hardly moved.
He stressed that Congress has the constitutional duty to enact a law defining and prohibiting the establishment of political dynasties in accordance with the intent of Section 26, Article 2 of the 1987 Constitution.
“Three decades later and despite numerous attempts to enact such legislation, there is still no enabling law prohibiting political dynasties in the country. Thus, its existence has undermined the checks and balance in government, weakened the competition in the political system, resulting in less access for alternative leaders to be part of the political arena, and perpetuated personality-based politics by prompting politicians to invest in their relatives,” Pangilinan said in his bill.
“Dynasties are pervasive in the 10 poorest provinces in the country.”
Various data also show that dynasties are pervasive in the 10 poorest provinces in the country, he said.
“While several bills have been filed in the past — with the Senate even coming up with a committee report on the anti-dynasty bill in the 17th Congress — these were never really acted upon and advanced to become a law,” Pangilinan said.
“We challenge this administration to make a difference and certify the anti-political dynasty bill as urgent, so that it will move in Congress,” he added.