PDP Laban pushes for proportional representation to replace current party list system

MANILA, Philippines – If it were up to PDP Laban, it will push for their version of federalism that calls for a proportional representation instead of the current party list system.

According to PDP Laban Federalism Institute Executive Director Jonathan Malaya, their proposal provides that every political party joining the elections should have their own programs that will benefit different sectors of the society.

The political party who wins the elections will have the authority to appoint partylist representatives.

The PDP Laban’s version proposes for 150 representatives from the current 50.

The number of district representatives, on the other hand, remains at 300.

“We intend to strengthen the party list system. Why? Because they are limited to sectors there are confusions you create as many sectors as they are…the challenge now to all political parties is to recruit all these sectors within their party while these existing party list members would be better off joining the mainstream political party,” Malaya said.

The Makabayan bloc in the Lower House, however, disagrees with this proposal saying it deprives the marginalized sectors of their rights to be heard.

“Nakikita niyo naman sa bawat anti-people sa mga anti-manggagawa na mga proposal sa Congress kami lang ang naririnig na boses doon (As you can see in every anti-people,anti-worker proposals in Congress, the only voices you would hear are ours),” ACT Teachers party List Rep. France Castro said.

For Anak Pawis Partylist Rep. Ariel Casilao, “Mga limitadong espasyo sa pampulitikang karapatan ng mamamayan ay minamaliit din ng proposal na ito (this proposal also looks down on the limited spaces in people’s political rights).”

ABS Party List Rep. Michael de Vera, one of the authors of the federalism in Congress, also said they cannot just abolish the current law.

“Napakaliwanag na po sa series of decisions ng Supreme Court especially yung Banat vs COMELEC, nung sinabi na bawal po na sumali sa party list system ang major political parties  (it is very clear in the series of decisions of the Supreme Court especially with the Banat vs Comelec it says that major political parties cannot join the party-list system),” De Vera said.

The Lower House is now deliberating each of the different versions of the proposed federalism.

They target to come up with the final form of the proposal and set it for a plebiscite along with the May 2019 National Elections. – Grace Casin | UNTV News & Rescue

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