The debate of the upper and lower house on having a joint or separate session on amending the Constitution may reach the Supreme Court (SC) if not settled, according to Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon.
With the ongoing debates on the shift from a unitary to a federal form of government, another topic that the lawmakers are tackling is the mode of amendment or revision of the Constitution.
“Siguro [ito] aabot sa (Maybe it will reach the) Supreme Court,” Drilon said, in the event that the Senate and the Congress are unable to settle with a decision, in an interview with DZMM on Wednesday.
While the House of Representatives is pushing for a joint session to tackle the amendments and revision, just the other day, Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson filed Resolution 580, which aims to separate the upper chamber from the lower chamber in a constituent assembly (con-ass) mode.
Lacson emphasized in the resolution that the 23-men Senate will be ‘voiceless’ versus the 300-men congressmen in such a set-up.
According to Drilon, the Senate had a caucus yesterday.
“Lahat ho kami unanimous ang… pag-uusapan namin… we will deliberate at itong resolution ng mababang kapulungan ay aming i-re-refer sa Committee on Constitutional Amendments kung saan ang chairman ay si Senator [Francis] Pangilinan (All of us had a unanimous decision that we will deliberate and we will refer the Congress’s resolution to the Committee on Constitutional Amendments in which Senator Francis Pangilinan is the chairman),” he said in the same interview.
He further said that senators this morning had a meeting on constitutional amendments and noted that there are two questions raised before the topic, “Ang unang pag-uusapan, kailangan bang baguhin ang ating saligang batas? [At] paano ba gagawin natin? Constitutional assembly o kailangan tumawag ng Constitutional Convention? (The first thing we will have to discuss is do we really need to revise the Constitution? And how do we do it? Will we have a Constitutional assembly or we need to call for a Constitutional Convention?)”
He, however, admitted that with these, there are still a lot of things to discuss before reaching the main topic of a federal government.
“Malayo pa po ‘yan, malayo pa po ang lalakbayin bago makarating sa ganung usapan (That topic is still too far for discussion),” Drilon said, emphasizing that the debates should not be rushed.