Congressman Alfredo Garbin Jr. may need the public’s forgiveness anew after showing his ignorance about amending the Constitution not once but twice, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Saturday.
Lacson debunked Garbin’s claim Friday that the tackling of proposed amendments to the 1987 Constitution by his House panel last Wednesday was in line with a Senate resolution Lacson authored in the 17th Congress.
On Friday, Garbin claimed in an interview with Politiko TV that Senate Resolution 580, which Lacson introduced in January 2018, allows both Houses to separately tackle amendments to the Constitution without need for a joint session.
“Under Senate Resolution 580, which I filed in 2018, proposed changes are to undergo the regular lawmaking process. This means proposed amendments to the Charter are to be tackled at the committee level first, then approved in the plenary, before both Houses convene into a constituent assembly,” Lacson noted.
“Nowhere in the resolution does it say na committee pa lang, Con-Ass na,” he added.
On the other hand, Lacson noted Garbin is now changing his tune by saying Wednesday’s deliberations were an exercise of a constituent power rather than a constituent assembly.
“Kaya patawarin uli natin siya. Hindi naman niya alam ngayon ang sinasabi niya,” he said.
Last Wednesday, Lacson questioned Garbin’s claim that his panel was already sitting as a constituent assembly, as Art. XVII, Sec. 1 of the 1987 Constitution itself decrees that any amendment to the Charter may be proposed by the Congress – meaning the Senate and the House of Representatives – or a constitutional convention.
“Last time we heard, the Congress of the Philippines is composed of the Senate and the House of Representatives,” Lacson said at the time.