Leyte Samar Daily Express
Since the ratification of the 1987 Constitution, congress has yet to enact an enabling law prohibiting political dynasties. The utter failure to pass such legislation is due to the lack of interest of legislators as they will be the most affected. We know too well how politicians had maintained a stranglehold of elective positions and power with family and kin partaking the limited posts available. Such practice results in the concentration of political power within and among family members. It deprives others of the opportunity to obtain elective office as the same are held exclusively beyond the reach and access of citizens who too are qualified to hold such offices. Incumbents and those in power have the edge in getting the position they presently hold. The tremendous force being wielded by the one in power who has at his disposal all necessary resources to ensure victory for him and everybody in the family who are seeking elective office as well.
But we have been into such iniquitous situation ever since the provision against political dynasties was enshrined in the Constitution. The provision is well intended to equalize the playing field insofar as access to public office is made available to the citizenry. The idea may have been inspired by the bad experience during the two-decade Marcos rule where political power was concentrated on individuals who are blessed to be so by the powers that be. Many local officials then had served office as long or even beyond the two-decade dictatorship of the ousted despot. These officials stayed in power for as long as they willed to the deprivation of other citizens who also want to serve the office being held. The only result of this bad experience was the inclusion of a provision on term limits in the Constitution and the Local Government Code.
Dynasty according to one legal luminary, former Comelec Chairman Christian Monsod, who was one of the framers of the 1987 Constitution, is committed in two ways. It may be simultaneous or successive. The more prevalent practice is successive dynasty wherein the elected post is passed among family members in succession after the end of the term limit. Such practice deprives all others aspiring for the post from getting the office as the incumbent has always the decided advantage for wielding power and resources to ensure keeping the post. In the other mode, family members seek elective office simultaneously and acquire control over positions of power. Unfortunately, there is no enabling law prohibiting dynasties.