MANILADespite a survey result that showed that a majority of Filipinos do not favor charter change, the Consultative Committee (ConCom) tasked by President Rodrigo R. Duterte to review the 1987 Constitution, remained optimistic that public perception would change once they see the provisions in the new charter being drafted.
The survey was taken at a time when the Consultative Committee is still formulating the proposed revisions. Once we are done and the proposed revisions are presented to the public, we are confident that the public perception will change, ConCom chairman and former chief justice Reynato Puno said in a statement on Wednesday.
The latest Pulse Asia Survey, conducted on March 23-28, showed that 64 percent of Filipinos are not in favor of changing or amending the 1987 Constitution.
Of this, a total of 32 percent said they are open to charter change in the future but not at present, while 32 percent oppose any amendment, whether now or at any other time.
In contrast, 23 percent of Filipinos are supportive of charter change, while the remaining 13 percent are ambivalent on the matter.
However, the ConCom said Pulse Asia's presentation of the results is misleading because it counts in the negative those who say they are not in favor of amending the Constitution now but at some time in the future.
In reality, these should be counted as in favor of amending the Constitutiononly that it should be done sometime in the future.
To their mind, the future could be next year or it could be in 2019when the proposed revisions may be ready for submission to them in a plebiscite, ConCom said.
So, the true pulse of the people will be felt and shown when the plebiscite is held for the people to decide whether or not they want a new Constitution and a new system of government, the ConCom said.
The committee pointed out that because surveys change from time to time, the expert panel will instead use the results as a guide as they continue its drafting stage.
The Consultative Committee views the results of the most recent survey of Pulse Asia on Constitutional change as a guide and a challenge that the proposed Constitution is drafting shall face at the proper timewhen it is submitted for ratification, the ConCom said.
It further said that it in all surveys, the people have understandably shown limited knowledge of the Constitution.
The latest Pulse Asia Survey also showed that 75 percent of Filipinos have little or almost no knowledge of the 1987 Constitution.
Given that condition, it is not likely that they would readily approve of changing something that they need to understand first, the ConCom said.
To date, the committee has voted to unanimously adopt its proposed anti-political dynasty provisions that may yet make dynasties a thing of the past.
All 18 of the 20 ConCom members present voted in favor of the anti-political dynasty provisions that, if adopted by Congress under the revised charter, would guarantee equal access for public service and prohibit political dynasties. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency