The focused now is to have “good governance” ??? sustained, institutionalized capacity of the government to make the right decisions and policies to implement in solving problems and give what the people deserves to have for the common good. We are indeed suffering from various problems; poverty, underemployment, low incomes, homelessness, graft and corruption and etc. We, Filipinos, believe that changing the system of government through constitutional reform or Charter Change (ChaCha) will lead us to achieve good governance.
But we can’t still conclude that changing the system is the answer to all the things we want to change and achieve because there are still factors that we should consider. Philippines is a country in Asia that gives so much value on nationalism and because of the people’s nationalistic attitude, we are united in our struggle for democracy. Professor S. E. Finer’s put democracy in its definition, “government which is derived from public opinion and is accountable to it. ” The government should be accountable in its existence and to opinions of the people that are expressed freely.
Don’t waste your time!
Order your assignment!
People started becoming aware to their civic and political rights and to the idea of modernization that they are expressing freely through their opinions and demands to have a government that could effectively lead them through modernization. And some of these Filipinos truly believe that presidential government was not the government they needed. Our government is somewhat like that of the US government, some critics believe that a presidential form of government is not suitable in the country because we are not like the United States.
There is the so called “consensual” nature of the American society that we do not have. There are times that we are united during revolutions but there are still schisms or divisions among our people. Grossholtz, characterizes Philippine political culture as “bargaining culture” because our political culture dominated our political views. The issue of Charter Change or ChaCha is not new to us because during the 1971-1972 Constitutional Convention, parliamentarianism was offered as a solution to the problems that our country is facing.
Two prominent personalities went to the Convention and pointed out their reasons regarding on the changing of government system in the country from presidential to parliamentary. They are Vicente Sinco and Miguel Cuaderno Sr. Cuaderno blamed the executive-legislative check and balances because for him, the principle of separation of powers favors only the Chief Executive. They attacked the presidential system of government by stating that the government we had was a slow government because there are deadlocks between the executive and legislative.
Presidential government is a system of government in which the executive power is vested in a president, whose office is separated from that of the legislature, where members of the political community participates in choosing the members of the governing body while parliamentary government is a system of government that the executive and legislative governs together. Since the British parliamentary is the most widely adopted parliamentary government, it is the basis for discussion in this position paper.
In a parliamentary government, the transformation of the assembly into a parliament leads to the splitting of the executive into a prime minister or chancellor (Head of the Government) and the monarch or president (Head of the State). The prime minister is elected by parliament while the position of the monarch is hereditary. The prime minister shall be appointed by the Head of the State directly or in a special college of electors. When the prime minister is appointed by the Head of the State, he can now nominate the ministers.
The ministry is a collective body that is at the same time members of the parliament. The ministry is responsible to the assembly, if the assembly thinks that the prime minister is not doing its job, by a formal vote of the assembly, the prime minister is force to resign and the Head of the State shall appoint a new one. The prime minister is among equal to the legislative body. The advantages and disadvantages of Parliamentary and Presidential Government are as follows:
There are three major advantages of a presidential government: “executive stability” or the president’s fixed term of office of six years without re-election, the election of the president is more democratic than that of the prime minister that is indirectly, since the Head of the State is the most important position in presidential and should be directly elected by the people. The elected President then appoints secretaries for his executive departments. When the people want to change a corrupt and abusive President before the end of his term, they may have to resort to “people power” revolt or a coup or by impeachment.
Lastly, the separation of powers; the executive power is vested in the President and legislative power is vested in Congress: its House of Representatives and Senate. The executive can’t go beyond and can’t interfere the legislative power and so the legislative to the executive. The separation of powers and checks and balance often leads to conflict between the President, the House of Representatives and the Senate that result to the delay of lawmaking. There are also three major disadvantages of a presidential government: the problem on executive-legislative deadlock or paralysis.
Bagehot argues that their mutual independence spells a mutual antagonism that weakens them both. Critics found one solution to the problem of the executive-legislative deadlock that is to keep the two powers separated but unbalance ??? increase the power of the executive compared with that of the legislative in order for the executive to be the supreme among others for a more effective government. There is also a consequence of a strong presidential power and having a limited presidential power is offered as a solution; limit the presidential term into no re-election or only one re-election.
The second disadvantage is temporal rigidity and lastly, the idea of winner-take-all rule. Only one candidate can win and the rest loses and this can lead to polarization. The president has little incentive to form coalitions with the opposition. Like that of the presidential, the parliamentary government has also its advantages and disadvantages. There is an executive instability ??? the legislative’s power of “votes of no confidence”, a prime minister can be removed and at the same time a new prime minister is elected.
There is a quick change in the government when executive failures call for a new leadership. The legislative function are to make laws and to support a cabinet in office which is a contrast to that of the presidential where in the legislative performs its main task to legislate but parliamentary ensures that the legislative and executive powers are united and there is a collective responsibility and accountability for governance. In the current situation of the Philippines, I strongly believe that we don’t need a new system of government.
In the current government system that we have, we can fully exercise our democratic rights. Presidential Government is the system of government for our country; it had just happened that the leaders that we voted and led to their positions do not exercise the power that we gave to them. I think that the problem is not more on the system of government that we have but those people who govern our government that makes everything in this country transformed to their worst appearances.
It would be another dilemma if the next leaders that will be elected on this year’s election will think on their personal interests first before reviving this country from various socio-economic problems. If no one is perfect, it also implies that no government is perfect; it is all a matter of how we govern a government that makes it a best, good, or a worst government. The problem on whether to change or not the government system of the Philippines from presidential to parliamentary will never give us which is compatible and best.
Both have its advantages and disadvantages and no one can win in this unending extreme debate on which is the best form of government for a country that needs a “good government” to solve its problems and lead it to modernization because lot of factors is to be considered. The most important factor that everyone should consider is a government with??? DEMOCRACY. I believed that a country bounded with democracy can still be a progressive country because its people are free and there is no tyranny because everyone are equal in achieving the best for each and everyone.