Community whispers: Should we amend the Constitution?


Should we amend the Constitution?

Amending the 1987 Constitution is the most important and most contentious change this country will face under President Duterte. It needs to be done with the utmost care.

The Constitution is reactionary in that it was developed in reaction to the excesses of the Marcos regime, and at a time when redeveloping a national identity overrode a need for balance. Consequently, it ended up far too detailed when general policy and ideology are what a charter calls for.

Should we amend the Constitution? Definitely, yes. I’d much prefer that a constitutional convention (Con-con) be formed. (Peter Wallace – PDI Opinion Section, March 15 issue) 


Duterte a very big supporter of press freedom

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said in a recent Senate hearing that despite criticisms thrown at him, President Rodrigo Duterte remains a “very big supporter” of press freedom.

At the start of the hearing of the Senate committee on public information and mass media, Roque made it clear that his appearance was in his personal capacity, and not as the President’s spokesman. 

He also requested that he be allowed to speak first because he had a regular press briefing in Malacañang.

“He’s (Duterte) a very big supporter of press of freedom. In the 30 years that he has served government, he has not filed a single case, and he welcomes criticisms as part of really the realm of politics,” Roque said. (PDI- March 15 issue) 


Government workers should be held to a higher standard

STATE officials and employees who peddle “fake news” should be held to a higher standard in accordance with Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

Citizen journalist and blogger Inday Espina-Verona stressed this point during the third Senate hearing into the proliferation of false information in the Philippines. (Philippine Star- March 15 issue) 


“If Espinosa is released, I would be free to hunt him down”

Chief Insp. Jovie Espenido is happy that the Department of Justice (DOJ) has dismissed the criminal charges against high-profile drug kingpin Kerwin Espinosa.

“If he would be released, I would be free to hunt him down,” the Ozamiz City police chief told the Inquirer in a phone interview.

Asked why, Espenido replied: “His drug dealings continue.”

Espenido was the police chief of Albuera in 2016 when he filed drug and weapon charges against Espinosa after a raid on the latter’s home that netted “shabu” (crystal meth) and firearms. (PDI-March 14 issue)