By Arjay L. Balinbin

President Rodrigo R. Duterte doubts if the proposal to abolish political dynasties in the Philippines will hurdle Congress.

Mr. Duterte told local government officials during the general assembly of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) at the Manila Hotel on Tuesday, March 20, that he supports the banning of political dynasties in the country; however, he doubts if Congress will approve it.

“A few of the principled men, I would say, want this kind of thing about dynasty [being] abolished. I am for it. Ang problema, lulusot ba ‘yan? (The problem is, will it get approved?),” the President said.

Mr. Duterte described the common practice in Philippine politics, where family members of an outgoing politician also get elected.

“Because, sa atin, pagkatapos mo eh (in this country, after your term,) they would ask for your son or your wife or…So, I don’t know,” he said.

The President explained why his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio was elected as his replacement as mayor of Davao City.

“Inday really is a…she’s a character and she can be mean. The Davaoeños want to continue ‘yung ano ‘yung nagawa mo (what I have started). Ano ba talaga ang nagawa ko? (What have I really accomplished?),” he said.

He added: “Why is it so peaceful (and) so clean? Drug is minimal and the law and order is very good. It took me about three terms really to perfect the system.”

The members of the Consultative Committee (ConCom) to Review the 1987 Constitution had approved last week the proposed anti-political-dynasty provisions in the federal constitution that they are set to present to Mr. Duterte for consideration in time for his State of the Nation Address in July.

“A political dynasty exists when a family whose members are related up to the second degree of consanguinity or affinity whether such relations are legitimate, illegitimate, half or full blood, maintains or is capable of maintaining political control by succession or by simultaneously running for or holding elective positions,” ConCom said.

Hence, the Committee is proposing that “no person related to an incumbent elective official within the second civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, as described above, can run for the same position in the immediately following election.”

“Persons related within the second civil degree of consanguinity or affinity are prohibited from running simultaneously for more than one national and one regional or local position.”