Diary of Augusto Caesar Espiritu

Friday, November 24, 1972

Ikeng Corpuz was actually sponsoring the Constitution when I entered. Ikeng was talking about his having worked for several days on the Constitution. Ikeng came up to me later with the complaint that I have abandoned them during the discussion of the economic provisions. I replied that this is a useless exercise.

Noli Santos later on commented that the problem with Mang Ikeng is that he tries to make you feel he is on your side when actually he is simply a consummate politician, without any definite stand on issues.

I felt that nothing would happen today. The only thing to do now is to present some amendments. There is really no use debating with the majority because we cannot possibly win.

Bebet Duavit presented a resolution fixing the date of the plebiscite. This was, of course, quite irregular. It indicates that the whole thing has been preplanned—”scripted”—as some people would say.

Iniong Santillan stood up to question the anomaly. How can we talk about fixing the date of the plebiscite when at this stage, we don’t even know whether the Constitution might be approved? There is no harm, Duavit replied. But everyone felt that the reality is that according to the scenario, the Constitution will be approved as is and that the plebiscite would be held at a given date.

Judging by the overwhelming approval of the resolution by the delegates, it would seem now that most of the delegates are looking forward to the passage of the Constitution as well as their assumption of office as assemblymen of the Republic. If there were a good number of delegates before who were not in favor of the draft Constitution, there are less of them now. And part of this comes from what I think is the “come-on” to the delegates, namely, the attraction of being members of the Assembly. It was an immoral thing to some of us before, but now that it has sunk into the minds of some delegates that they are going to be assemblymen, I think that many of those who had hitherto been wavering have now resolved their doubts in favor of being assemblymen—so we should hang up and finish the Constitution.

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