Former Chief Justice Hilario Davide on the proposed shift to federal system of government

21 November - “A lethal experiment, a fatal leap, a plunge to death, a leap to hell,” this was how former Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide Jr. refers to the move to shift to a federal form of government. Justice Davide said that the arguments of the proponents of Federalism - particularly that our present unitary system is highly centralized and has only created an Imperial Manila – are “deceptively misleading and unfounded.” He stressed that the present Constitution has adequately guaranteed strong local autonomy and provided ample checks and balances in the system. What needs to be done is to craft, amend and update the needed enabling laws and fully implement the provisions of the Constitution. “The Federal system of government is definitely not suited for our country and our people of our generation and even those of the succeeding generations.” Justice Davide further stated that federalism can neither fit with our history, culture and character, nor can it fit with our training and experiences in the art of politics, government and governance. Speaking at the joint membership meeting of the Makati Business Club, Management Association of the Philippines, Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines, and the Employers Confederation of the Philippines on 21 November at the Manila Polo Club in Makati City, Justice Davide asserted that the 1987 Constitution of the Philippines is “the best in the world being the only one that is pro-God, pro-Filipino, and pro-people”. The meeting with Justice Davide is the second of a two-part series on the proposed shift to federalism organized by MBC with other key business organizations. Former Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno was the guest of honor in the joint membership meeting last 24 April 2017 at the Makati Shangri-La Hotel in Makati City.