BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya—Gov. Carlos Padilla here has expressed his support for a federal form of government, but rejected the province becoming part of a regional state in the country.
Padilla was one of the resource speakers during a recent forum on federalism sponsored by the provincial government at the St. Mary’s University in this town.
“If you are to ask me, it’s a ‘yes’ to federalism but ‘no’ to a regional state,” the governor said.
Though the present unitary form of government “is not perfect and not the best, we are still co-existing with each other because we are in a good relationship,” Padilla said.
“If autonomy will be given to a regional state, there will be a quarrel between the national and regional or between the regional and provincial governments,” he added.
He also said a regional state will be disadvantageous to provinces with a small voting population, saying such a government “will be dominant, the power of a province’s autonomy will be taken away, and ultimately the province will be marginalized.”
Former Senator Joey Lina, who also graced the forum, rejected the Duterte administration’s proposed shift to federalism, saying the Local Government Code only needs to be reviewed and be fully implemented among the local government units.