La Salle dean proposes ban on political turncoats

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A POLITICAL science professor is calling for the passage of a Senate bill that seeks to prevent switching among members of national political parties.

“We must develop party-citizen linkages. Any organization mingles with [their] members. Political parties should also do so,” said Julio Teehankee, dean of the De La Salle University College of Liberal Arts, in a forum at the UST Engineering Conference Hall last May 16.

Teehankee discussed Senate Bill No. 2610, the Political Party Development Act, which proposes to sanction members of political parties who resort to turncoatism.

“We can never ever hope to institutionalize our party system if we continue to allow balimbing politics or party-switching,” he said.

Teehankee blamed members of the Liberal Party for their failure to reform the country’s political system, which could have prevented them from losing members to the ruling PDP-Laban of President Rodrigo Duterte.

“They became a victim of their failure. Have they passed the Freedom of Information Act, the Political Party Development Act, the Anti-Dynasty Act and all the other bills, they will not be in this situation,” he said.

Last May 10, the ruling PDP-Laban welcomed new members from the Liberal Party, Nationalist People’s Coalition, Nacionalista Party, and Lakas–CMD.

The forum, titled “Reforming the Philippine Party System: Tackling Issues and Challenges in the 21st Century,” was organized by the UST Political Science Forum.

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