Enrile wants relaxed restrictions on nuclear weapons, economic provisions

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 22) — Chief PresidentIal Legal Counsel Juan Ponce Enrile said it is time to ease restrictions on economic provisions and nuclear weapons in the 1987 Constitution, saying this could bolster the economy and allow the Philippines to stand up against the bullying of other countries.

Enrile made the comment as a resource person at the meeting of the Senate constitutional amendments panel on Wednesday.

He said the views were his own and he was not speaking for President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

"We must now remove the restriction imposed by the Cory admin on this country and her people not to have any nuclear in the country," the former senatior and defense chief said. "I think in my personal opinion that is the most serious and unwanted provision in the Constitution."

Having nuclear weapons will allow the Philippines to protect itself against "superpowers."

"So that our people will not be trampled upon let alone made a tuta or alipin of other countries," he said.

The Philippines, however, is a party to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which bans any nuclear weapon activities.

Enrile also said the economic provision is "very important" as opening up the country to foreign investment can create more jobs.

"We don't have enough capital here and yet our popularity is growing," he said. "We need investments, jobs. Without investments, you don't have jobs. Without jobs, you don't have consumers, tax payers."

He also rejected the proposal to conduct Constitutional Convention (Con-con) to introduce amendments to the charter, believing that the government might spend ₱100 billion.

Enrile said the amendments should be done by Congress itself convened as a constituent assembly.

CNN Philippines Correspondent Eimor Santos contributed to this report.