Consultative panel head: Duterte can't serve two terms

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 26) — Consultative committee head Reynato Puno said Monday that President Rodrigo Duterte cannot run for a second term even if the new Constitution would allow a President to serve for two terms.

Puno explained that Duterte was elected under the 1987 Constitution so he is bound by its provisions that prevent him from running again.

He said there is also no need for Duterte to extend his term beyond 2022.

"The transition period will not go beyond 2022, the term of President Duterte," Puno pointed out.  "If you look at the transitory provisions of our different constitutions, it did not take an indefinite length of time to be able to go to the regular government.

Puno said it is impossible to have the new Constitution approved by the people through a plebiscite by October this year.

He explained that convening the Constituent Assembly, especially now that the Senate has refused to join the House of Representatives in discussing charter change, will take some time.  In addition, the  Senate could be very busy acting as an impeachment court if the case against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno is brought to the chamber in the latter half of the year.