Philippine lower house starts discussing Constitution revision hinh anh 1Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte (Photo: Xinhua/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The Philippine House of Representatives on January 16 kicked off discussions on possible amendments to the Constitution that has existed in the country for three decades.

The Constitution change aims to pave the way for a shift to a different form of government – unitary to federal, one of the key planks of President Rodrigo Duterte’s election campaign in 2016, seeking a remedy to what he called “neglect” by the Manila-centric political establishment that has left provinces in perpetual poverty.

Lower house representatives will vote and approve a resolution this week that would enable both chambers of the Congress to discuss the Constitution revision.

Duterte’s allies, who dominate the nearly 300-member house, are expecting a Constitution that allows expanding both legislative chambers, lengthening lawmakers’ terms, giving provinces more financial autonomy and having a prime minister as head of government and a separately elected president.-VNA