Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr, chairman of the Senate Committee on local Government, today said that the Senate is a bastion of independent thinking legislators committed to protect the national interest.
“This is a defining moment for each Senator, for the Senate's reputation as an independent bastion of democracy, for the people of ARMM, for the peace process, and for democracy itself.” Marcos said
Marcos remained confident that the Senate will once again prove to be beyond and above partisan politics when voting takes place today on this issue of great import.
“We are at a crossroads where the members of the Philippine Senate must choose to either uphold, protect, defend, and further strengthen the constitutionally mandated autonomy of ARMM; or, backtrack and cancel the scheduled elections in August and replace their elected leaders with Malacanang appointed officials and in so doing remove from them their basic right to suffrage and lose their trust in our sincerity in keeping sacred agreements enshrined, no less, in our Constitution.” He added.
Recently, Marcos submitted a report refusing to recommend the passage of a bill that would postpone ARMM elections scheduled in August saying granting President Benigno Aquino III the authority to appoint officers-in-charge was contrary to the autonomy that the Constitution guaranteed the region.
In his report, Marcos recommended that the elections in the autonomous region be held as scheduled on the second Monday of August 2011.
He said synchronized elections should be considered only after there was concrete evidence of electoral and political reforms. He expressed the Senate’s that there was an immediate need to carry out reforms in the region and to review the organic act that created it.