Federal Philippines or Republic Philippines?
March 27, 2007 9:27pm CST
There many discussions about this one. There are pros and cons of each side. But the question are: Is Federalism a solution to the problem of our country today? Can it benefit the Philippines as a whole? Are we ready for this? This is just a few questions raised. I love my country very much and I want to help even in my own little way. Thank you.
28 Mar 07
Hi, Ericjohn. Your concern about the structure of your country is natural for a patriot like you. I cannot claim to know anything much about your country, but if I can talk fom the standpoint of our own experience in Nigeria, i would vote for true federalism any day. Indeed, that was what our great "founding fathers" opted for on gaining independence from the British rule in 1960. The complexity of Nigeria in terms of such factors as heterogeneity of culture, religion, ethnicity, education (western or eastern), population, land mass, economic base, vegetation, etc. informed our great leaders then to opt for true federalism, with strong regions and weaker centre. Federalism worked well for Nigeria then, with each region developing healthily at its own pace under an atmostphere of healthy rivalry. Unfortunately, the first coup detat of January, 1966 destroyed the relative peace and development we had enjoyed under a federal arrangement. The military boys that came on the scene unthinkingly scrapped our beloved federal structure, and imposed a unitary system. We have never recovered from the monstrosity of this reckless imposition up to now. Since then, Nigeria has known no peace nor tangible development, despite her bountiful resources. Most of us are nolstalgic about federalism, and are fervently crying for its restoration to cure the ills in the land, but the oppressive powerful few who have undeservedly gained from unitarism in Nigeria would not let it be, and prefer that we remain a federation in name only. By the way, I don't think federalism precludes republicanism. Nigeria became a republic in 1963 (Federal Republic of Nigeria), and this new status never detracted from her true federalism. Maybe you have some lessons to learn from our own experience. Best of luck.
29 Mar 07
I was very much impressed by your statement Sir Gbolly54. Our country too has been in a Federal country in the time of President Marcos term. Federalism is very much suitable to our city since we are in a province that has a high income tax contribution to the national government. Sad to say only a scrap has been return. You have a high quality communication skill Sir I hope I do have that skill of yours. Thank you very much for your response.
5 Apr 07
Thanks, Ericjohn, for your compliments and for choosing my posting as best. I am flattered by them both. English is our official language in Nigeria. Hardly can anybody move forward whether at work or at school without gaining a high level of proficiency in it. Indeed, this requirement is part of the bane of our underdevelopment, because it has relegated our mother tongues to the background. No nation ever succeeds well on borrowed language.
26 Jul 18
I do believe there are advantages as we see in other countries who have adapted it in their own countries. But looking at our situation as a nation, were very fragmented and regionalistic people that applying federalism might affect the unity of the country. Economically speaking I think our country is not yet ready. Transitioning would mean a lot of cost due to decentralizing would mean adding more budget for new offices that have to be established in each states/region. Meaning we need to add salaries to additional senators per region, additional judiciary per region etc etc. Economically speaking can we afford such with $ going stronger against us and ballooning loans from China, I do not think that would really help. The taxpayers will be more burdened by additional taxes since state/regional tax would be added besides the existing national taxes we pay. Are we the citizens of this country ready for such change. Maybe this may be a paradise for the politicians since they can hide their dirty linens under federal system since they only need to take hold of their own territories and grip it tightly so national government cannot just peek into their internal affairs so easily. Army and police powers may still be under the national government control but of course if they are assigned in federal states they can easily be manipulated by these corrupt politicians to gain favor with them and use them as their private armies.