Bishops seek ban on political dynasties

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MANILA, Jan. 29, 2013— As the May 2013 elections approaches, Catholic bishops deplored the “widening practice” of political dynasties in the country and the lack of measure against political clans.

In pastoral statement released Tuesday, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines wants the political dynasties to disappear in Philippine politics because, saying that it exacerbates the problem on corruption.

“Political dynasties breed corruption and ineptitude,” reads part of the statement signed by Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, CBCP president.

Without naming any family in particular, the bishops stressed that political authority should not be monopolized for certain family interests or of a political party.

“When political authority is exercised merely for these narrow interests, it betrays the reason for its existence,” according to them.

“Moreover, such situation breeds corruption and inhibits general access to political power which is a fundamental mark of democracy,” said the CBCP.

The Catholic hierarchy also chided lawmakers for failure to pass a measure that would ban political dynasties.

“Therefore, we denounce the continued existence of family political dynasties and the continuing delay of passing a law to implement the constitutional provision banning political dynasties,” the bishops said.

“We are aggrieved that lawmakers themselves defy the supreme law of the land by not following the mandate of our Philippine Constitution given 26 years ago to make an enabling law to ban political dynasties,” they added.

And if Congress continues to ignore their moral and constitutional duties, the CBCP said they will back initiatives of lay people to enact a law through the people’s initiative.

“If Congress is unwilling to act on this, we support initiatives by the lay faithful to pass an enabling law against political dynasties through the people’s initiative, which the Constitution provides,” said the bishops. (CBCPNews)



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