MANILA -- Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on Wednesday denied allegations that the House leadership is railroading the passage of the proposed federal constitution.
Arroyo made the statement following the second reading approval of Resolution of Both Houses (RBH) 15 on Tuesday after only three session days of plenary debates.
"It was part of the democratic process. There was a debate. It was voted on," Arroyo told reporters in an ambush interview.
Arroyo, who is a principal author of RBH 15, said the draft federal charter is expected to be put to a vote on third and final reading on Monday (December 10).
"We are able to pass it on second reading so three days after the copy is circulated, we should be taking it up on third reading. Hopefully, that would be Monday," she said.
RBH 15 proposes a presidential-bicameral-federal system of government and empowers Congress to establish federal states.
It seeks to adopt and develop a two-party system as a mechanism of representation and democratic governance.
It also lifts the term limits for members of Congress. Lawmakers shall be required to have a college degree.
The first election under the proposed Constitution shall be held on the second Monday of May 2022.
The term of the President and Vice President, which shall end in 2022, shall not be extended. The incumbent president is prohibited from running in the 2022 elections. (PNA)
Photo by Ted Aljibe/AFP/Rappler