FOR CLARITY | Finance chief calls for dialogue on provisions of Charter draft

7 months ago

AUGUST 10, 2018 – Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III has responded to Consultative Committee member Fr. Ranhilio Aquino’s call for the president to fire him for airing concerns on the federal Charter draft.

Dominguez said he respects the opinion of Aquino but believes that such attitude would not enrich the level of discourse on the proposed Constitution.

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The finance secretary has also maintained his opinion on the draft charter, saying it contains ambiguous provisions on the allocation of expenditures for the proposed federal government and federated regions. He said the economic team welcomes a discussion on the draft so that it is “clear and unambiguous.”

“We do not want the revenue assignment and the expenditure assignment to be misunderstood, as what happened in the recent case involving the Internal Revenue Allotment (of the local government units),” Dominguez said in a statement.

He clarified that while the economic team is not against federalism, he stressed that it’s their responsibility to point out unclear provisions in the draft charter.

Dominguez also pointed out that the draft Constitution enumerates the exclusive powers of the federal government and the federated regions but is silent on the funding source for the exercise of these powers.

“It is our duty and responsibility to point these out and engage in a healthy, level-headed discussion, especially when the possible repercussions could result in dire, irreversible economic consequences,” Dominguez said.

“We believe that these should be set out clearly so that they adhere to the principle that ‘funds follow function and ‘funds follow program,'” he added.