PH Federalism Debate: Where Are We Now?
The Constitution, regarded as the fundamental law of the land, is the foundation of our institutions. Constitutions seek to build, enable and regulate institutions that cater the needs and rights of people (“What is a Constitution?”) They also have a key role in empowering states, providing government stability and legitimizing regimes (Heywood 338).
Any attempt at an amendment or revision of our constitution entails a complex process of discourse and decision-making. Amendments mean changing specific provisions in our Constitution without affecting its other parts. But, a revision implies a fundamental review to change the essence or totality of our Constitution (“How To Change A Constitution.”). With the ongoing debate on the viability of a shift to a federal form of government in the Philippines, not only politicians and scholars but the citizenry should pay a close attention because everyone will be affected by…show more content… Among them include the UPSE-Ayala Forum, CPBRD Lecture Series and the PIDS Annual Public Policy Conference (Agabin et al.; Corpuz et al.). These lectures evaluated, discussed and analyzed the prospects of federalism in the country using different perspectives and fields of inquiry where reception for federalism ranged from full support to constructive criticisms. In general, advocates of federalism argue that under a federal system, the Philippines will have a more inclusive economic development by allowing the regions to have better fiscal autonomy. Moreover, they see it as way to ensure more avenues for representation through regional governments that know better of policies that suit local conditions while bringing the government closer to the people accommodating our country’s archipelagic nature and ethno-linguistic diversity. They also see it as the key solution to the Mindanao peace problem (Fabella; Pimentel; Ranada and