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Bacolod City, Philippines Tuesday, March 13, 2018
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Hold cha-cha consultations,
Negros solons challenged


The Paghimud-os Negros (Citizens' Movement for Democracy and People Power) is challenging Negros’ congressmen to conduct more comprehensive consultations and allow the people to participate in transparent discussions of the proposed changes to the 1987 Constitution and the shift to a federal structure, former Gov. Rafael Coscolluela said yesterday.

Paghimud-os, that is a coalition of more than 20 groups, is also calling on Congress to allow for a truly democratic and open process through a Constitutional Convention, if at all, and not a Constituent Assembly or ConAss, Coscolluela, a co-convenor of the group, said.

The coalition will be launched at the Bishop’s House in Bacolod City this morning.

The members of Paghimud-os Negros are standing up to make the voice of the people heard, Coscolluela said.

Paghimud-os seeks to strengthen civil society through a broad coalition of concerned citizens and groups that will actively promote open discussion of issues that affect all Filipinos, he added.

The urgent issue of the day is Charter Change and with that, the proposed shift to Federalism, Coscolluela said.

The consensus among the members is that the people need to be fully informed about these issues, he added.

“We submit that there is no need to rush the process, and that it is possible to address our nation's problems in other ways that need not divide the people into factions and incompatible interest groups,” Coscolluela said.

The coalition is urging everyone to be involved, and join discussions on issues that will affect the lives of the Filipino people now and in the future.

Paghimud-os will hold a series of public forums, initially on Charter Change and Federalism, at St. John Vianney Hall at the Bishop's House in Bacolod City from 1 to 5 p.m. Wednesday and Friday.

Forum speakers will include Negrense political commentator, lawyer Alex Lacson, who will tackle "Charter Change: The Process, Issues and Concerns " on Wednesday, and former Bayan Muna representative Neri Colmenares who will talk about "Charter Change: For Better or for Worst?" on Friday.

Other speakers are being lined up so that various perspectives may be aired. Participants who wish to study the issues more closely will be provided with access to various informational materials, Coscolluela said.*CPG


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