Church Calls For Nationwide Protests vs HR 1109 Con-Ass On June 10

Manila – The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) lashed at the subterfuge that Congress used to pass HR 1109, a resolution to convene a constituent Assembly without the legal participation of the Senate. The Lower House, dominated by the allies of President Gloria Arroyo, plans to amend the Constitution to change the government from a bicameral-presidential form into a unicameral-parliamentary form with Arroyo as prime minister. “Our lawmakers should realize that what they did was wrong. They are really wrong. Why are they in a hurry to change the Charter?” asked Manila Archbishop Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales. Democratically Elected The CBCP in its latest statement reiterated its consistent position since 1997 – Any Constitutional amendments should be done only through a Constitutional convention with elected delegates. In a pastoral letter issued June 6, Jaro [Iloilo] Archbishop and CBCP president Angel Lagdameo declared: “As we had said for the 2007 election, we say it again: Let the 2010 election push through and not be postponed. If there should be a Charter-change, let it be after 2010 and via a constitutional convention whose delegates are democratically elected by the people.” Plan of Mobilization “Therefore, we appeal to the House of Representatives not to pursue House Resolution 1109 convening themselves into a constituent assembly.” “We appeal to members of civil society who wish to publicly protest against HR 1109 to go on with their plan of mobilization to protect the common good and national interest.” Non-Violent Way “Express it in a peaceful non-violent way in order that we may fall into the trap that necessitates martial law again. Learn the lesson from the past.” “We then ask the question which needs to be asked again: Do the proposal shifts provide for greater decentralization that efficiently devolves powers and enable civil society groups to participate more in governance?” Crisis of Truth “We believe that at the bottom of our political chaos is a crisis of moral values, a crisis of truth and justice, of unity and solidarity for the sake of the common good and genuine peace.” Photo courtesy of DayLife.com. Clockwise: Manila Archbishop Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, Jaro Archbishop and CBCP president Angel Lagdameo, Nueva Caseres Bishop Leonardo Legaspi and Bishop Francisco Claver. This story originally appeared in AllVoices.com: http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/3398831-church-calls-for-nationwide-protests-vs-hr-1109-conass-on-june-10

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