2010.2016 – Time For A Real Change

Over the past few days, we continued to get a healthy consensus from sectors we met that it is time for a real change. I have been consulting a number of people on the 2010.2016 proposal and no one had an objection on electing the constitutional convention delegates in 2010. At the same time, this is also when we will elect the new President, Senators and Congressmen.

It was quite clear that everyone I talked to wants the constitution reviewed so that we can make necessary economic and political reforms. A number of people also asked why 2016 and not earlier? A longer timetable allows a more thorough review by the concon and also removes doubt that it may be used by incumbent officials or whoever will win in the 2010 election as the change in the system will not apply to them, but it will be during their incumbency that the transition by 2016 will be planned well.

So far, many other ideas have come about, from the idea of a bicameral or a unicameral parliament, having regional senators, to the president still being voted directly by the people and the prime minister being elected by the members of the parliament. But for me, this discussion can be brought about once we all agree on a concon on 2010. Let me share with you another input I got thru email on how many countries implement a bicameral parliament.
From: G.D. Chan ([email protected])

Dear Mr. Concepcion,

In reaction to your 2010.2016 article in GoNegosyo, here is a list of countries with bicameral parliament. It seems to be not such a bad group to belong to. I would go for a parliamentary system, but bicameral. Given our experience with the House of Representatives, I do not think a unicameral parliamentary system would sell.

Countries with Bicameral Parliament

  1. Algeria: Council of the Nation & National People’s Assembly
  2. Antigua & Barbuda: Senate & House of Representatives
  3. Australia: Senate & House of Representatives
  4. Austria: Federal Council & National Council
  5. Bahamas: Senate & House of Assembly
  6. Bahrain: Consultative Assembly & Assembly of Representatives
  7. Barbados: Senate & House of Assembly
  8. Belarus: Council of the Republic & Chamber of Representatives
  9. Belgium: Senate & Chamber of Representatives
  10. Belize: Senate & House of Representatives
  11. Bhutan: National Council & National Assembly
  12. Bosnia & Herzegovina: House of Peoples & House of Representatives
  13. Cambodia: Senate & National Assembly
  14. Canada: Senate & House of Commons
  15. Congo (Democratic Republic): Senate & National Assembly
  16. Congo (Republic): Senate & National Assembly
  17. Czech Republic: Senate & Chamber of Deputies
  18. Egypt: Consultative Council & People’s Assembly
  19. Ethiopia: House of Federation & House of People’s Representatives
  20. Fiji: Senate & House of Representatives
  21. France: Senate & National Assembly
  22. Gabon: Senate & National Assembly
  23. Germany: Federal Council & Federal Diet
  24. Grenada: Senate & House of Representatives
  25. Haiti: Senate & Chamber of Deputies
  26. India: Council of States & House of People
  27. Ireland: Senate & Chamber of Deputies
  28. Iraq: Council of Union & Council of Representatives
  29. Italy: Senate of the Republic & Chamber of Deputies
  30. Jamaica: Senate & House of Representatives
  31. Japan: House of Councilors & House of Representatives
  32. Jordan: Assembly of Senators & Assembly of Deputies
  33. Kazakhstan: Senate & Assembly
  34. Kyrgyzstan: Legislative Assembly & Assembly of People’s Representatives
  35. Lesotho: Senate & National Assembly
  36. Madagascar: Senate & National Assembly
  37. Malaysia: Senate & House of Representatives
  38. Mauritania: Assembly of Senators & National Assembly
  39. Morocco: Assembly of Councilors & Assembly of Representatives
  40. Netherlands: First Chamber & Second Chamber
  41. Poland: Senate & Diet
  42. Romania: Senate & Chamber of Deputies
  43. Russia: Federation Council & State Assembly
  44. Saint Lucia: Senate & House of Assembly
  45. Slovenia: National Council & National Assembly
  46. South Africa: National Council of Provinces & National Assembly
  47. Spain: Senate & Congress of Deputies
  48. Switzerland: Council of States & National Council
  49. Tajikistan: National Assembly & Assembly of Representatives
  50. Thailand: Senate & House of Representatives
  51. Trinidad and Tobago: Senate & House of Representatives
  52. United Kingdom: House of Lords & House of Commons
  53. Uzbekistan: Senate & Legislative Chamber

To be fair, there are also economically-advanced countries that have a unicameral parliamentary system:

  1. China
  2. Denmark
  3. Finland
  4. Greece
  5. Hungary
  6. Iceland
  7. Israel
  8. New Zealand
  9. Norway
  10. Portugal
  11. Singapore
  12. Sweden
  13. Turkey
  14. Ukraine

But please note the Asian examples. China is a totalitarian state while Singapore is such a small city state that perhaps there is logic to having just a unicameral body.

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Congratulations to the winners of the HSBC Young Entrepreneurs Awards for 2007-08, an annual business plan writing competition which aims to cultivate and inspire young people’s interest in entrepreneurship. I told HSBC President and CEO Mark Watkinson that this was one of the best competitions I have judged with very good teams presenting. Two teams from Ateneo won the first and second place and third place went to the students from UP Diliman. I did vote for the Ateneo team since they wore green ties. Kidding aside, they deserved to win and were honest with the originators of the ideas. The complete winners are the Flexisound team (Gold and Eco-Business Innovation Award) Menard Dacono, Katrina Gracia Macaraig and Klaire Aldyn King, the Portalis Team (Silver) Fay Irene Gurrea, Missy Cheah and Kamille Patricia Carlos and the Gaia Team (Bronze) Dindi Peralta and Mark Rome Race. Aside from myself, the judges for this competition were Mark Watkinson as Chair, Lorenzo Tan of WWF Philippines, Andrew Tan of Megaworld Corporation, Wilfred Uytengsu Jr. of Alaska, Hans Schwab of SICPA and one of our Go Negosyo mentors Johnlu Koa of French Baker.

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Be the first NOKIA MOBILE ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR! The Nokia Mobile Entrepreneur Award is a nationwide awards program for innovative Filipino entrepreneurs that use mobile technology products and services in their business operations. Download the participation form at www.nokia.com.ph or www.gonegosyo.net and send via fax (+632) 637-7873 or e-mail at [email protected] Deadline is on April 14, 2008. For more info call or text (+632) 637-9229, (+63919) 685-7079 or email [email protected]