President Rodrigo Duterte has raised the possibility of tapping former President and incumbent Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo as head of a body that will propose changes to the 1987 Constitution to shift the country’s form of government to a federal system.
The Chief Executive, through an executive order, created a Consul-tation Committee to study possible amendments to the charter, with Arroyo possibly leading the 25-member panel.
He, however, admitted that the last word on the matter will be Arroyo’s.
“Maybe. Maybe. Maybe, she may not want to. But maybe,” Mr. Duterte told a press conference after meeting the Filipino community in Myanmar on Sunday.
Arroyo was recently ousted from her post as deputy speaker in the House for opposing the death penalty bill, a priority measure of the Duterte administration.
The President also said is he not keen on appointing Arroyo to any post in his Cabinet following the recent movements in the lower chamber.
According to him, he couldn’t see the former president working for the Executive branch under his watch.
“I don’t (think that) she will accept (any offers to my Cabinet). She cannot be working under a President when she was already a president,” Mr. Duterte stressed.
“That will be quite a tall order for her to do that. But representing the people of the district of her own province would be somehow acceptable to even everybody,” he said.
Despite her removal, Arroyo has expressed her support for the Duterte administration.
Also, Malacañang said the Pampanga representative remains an ally of administration.
“We respect Representative Arroyo’s being steadfast in her position to issues that are close to her heart, such as her opposition to the death penalty,” presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella was quoted as saying.