By Eden Eve S. Lacea
Pampanga Representative and PDP-Laban member Aurelio "Dong" D. Gonzales Jr. is appealing for longer terms in the positions of president, vice president, House members, and local officials. 

According to Resolution of Both Houses No. 7, the proposed presidential term would have a five-year term and one reelection for a total of 10 years, as well as a ban from any elective position after serving the term of office.

The same term length is also applied for the vice presidential position, but with the condition that a vote for the president would be counted as a vote for his/her vice-presidential running mate as well.

Rep. Gonzales stated that the current six-year term for a president is insufficient, especially when the country is facing a crisis, but also added that the elected president could be voted out in the next election should his governance has been bad during his present term.

“A six-year tenure is too short for a good President, especially if he is confronted with a crippling crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to wreak havoc on our health and economy and whose end is not yet in sight. It may take more than one presidency before the nation can fully recover from this catastrophe,” he said. 

“On the other hand, if we do not like the way the President is governing, we can vote him out of office a year earlier if his term of office is five years,” the lawmaker added.

The Pampanga Representative explained that the proposed Resolution can result in an improved party system, as well as a more coordinated president and vice-president.

“This would strengthen the political party system and ensure that the top two officials of the land are one in leading the nation,” Gonzales shared.

Aside from extending the terms for the two highest positions in the nation, the Resolution also introduced the same five-year tenure with one reelection for the members of the House of Representatives, as opposed to the current three-year term of office.

“A three-year tenure is too short for a representative. In his first year, he tends to be on a learning curve in terms of legislative and constituency duties, with much of his work happening in his second year. A large part of his third year is spent on reelection-related activities,” lawmaker Gonzales said.

Excluding barangay officials, local elective positions would also have a term of five years, but elected officers can not serve for more than two consecutive years.