Church urged to take action on gov’t’s federalism bid

Former Congressman Teodoro “Teddy” Casiño speaking at the National Discernment of Priests on their Prophetic Role Gathering held March 6. (Photo by Nico Balbedina)

A former Congressman emphasized the importance of the Church’s response towards the social issues in the National Discernment of Priests on their Prophetic Role Gathering held March 6.

One of the event speakers, former Congressman Teodoro “Teddy” Casiño, addressed the attendees saying ‘the responsibility of the Church in helping the people understand the issues is big.’

“The role of the people in the Church will be big, the CBCP must come out and dive for discernment and explain to the people why we need to oppose Charter Change,” he said to the clergy present.

He also expressed the concern that people don’t understand what Cha-Cha is about, noting that “[the people] only discuss federalism in the abstract, but how it will be exercised is not cleared.”

“We should know what the context of Charter Change under the Duterte administration is… the main agenda is Federalism,” Casiño explained.

“Duterte’s charter change is a step towards dictatorship, a self-serving scheme for elites in power, a sell-out of the national economy and patrimony and an attack on social justice and human rights” Former Congressman Casino enumerated.

“The people must understand, take a stand, and we must fight, act! Whether in a moral or political stand point, it’s important we stop this.” he added

Charter Change and Federalism

The former congressman further elaborated that the people are not aware of the weight of the issue and how ‘dangerous’ the amendments were if instituted.

“All this looks good in paper, but how will this impact the country? Federalism will imply a shift to unitary government to a federal government and presidential to a parliamentary type of government,” he explains.

Continuing, he spells out that the Philippines is now dominated by political dynasties and that having a federal government will be “a step back from national unity to regionalism.”

“This is nothing new, many government have already tried [charter change].. but we have always stopped them by reuniting. At the end of the day it is only the Filipinos who can stop this” the former politician concluded.

Organized by the National Clergy Discernment Group and themed “The Filipino Clergy’s Prophetic Ministry in the Context of the Current Philippine Situation,” the 2-day event was held on March 6-7 at Maryhill School of Theology on Gilmore Avenue in New Manila, Quezon City. (Christine Paguirigan)

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