MANILA — For President Aquino, the country may consider lifting the term limit to give way for re-election, but not on consecutive basis.
Aquino was asked about the issue during the sidelines of his state visit in Japan last week.
“Perhaps that is something that the Philippines can consider,” he told reporters in a question-and-answer forum during his guesting at the Japanese National Press Club.
Aquino cited South American countries where presidents are allowed to seek re-election given that they do not do it on a consecutive basis.
“Certain countries, like the South American countries, also went through a similar period (dictatorship). In their constitutions, a sitting president has to step down, but can re-run after the intervention of a different administration,” Aquino said.
In the Philippines, presidents are not allowed to seek re-election, as it is barred by the 1987 Constitution to avoid overstaying of elected presidents.
“My answer to those espousing an extension of terms was, we will undoubtedly have benefits for having a government that will not have to relearn how to govern, but at the same time we open the doors to somebody who might emulate Mr. Marcos and decide not to leave the office forever,” he pointed out.
“And I think that is a very serious risk that our country, or my country, has to avoid. So I ask that we not consider reopening the Constitution for term limits,” Aquino said.