INITIATIVE It is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislation. THRE...

It is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislation.

1. Initiative on the Constitution—refers to a petition proposing amendments to the Constitution
2.  Initiative on statutes—refers to a petition to enact a national legislation
3.  Initiative on local legislation—refers to a petition proposing to enact a regional, provincial, municipal, city, or barangay law, resolution or ordinance (Section 2 [a], R.A. 6735)

Section 2 (b) of R.A. 6735 provides for:
1. Indirect Initiative‐ exercise of initiative by the people through a proposition sent to Congress or the local legislative body for action
2. Direct Initiative‐ the people themselves filed the petition with the COMELEC and not with Congress.

In case of:
1.      Autonomous regions ‐ not less than 2,000 registered voters
2.      Provinces and Cities – not less than 1,000 registered voters
3.      Municipalities – not less than 100 registered voters
4.      Barangays – not less than 50

may file a petition with the Regional Assembly or local legislative body, respectively, proposing the adoption, enactment, repeal, or amendment, of any law, ordinance or resolution. (Sec. 13 RA 6735)

1.      The power of local initiative shall not be exercised more than once a year;
2.      Initiative shall extend only to subjects or matters which are within the legal matters which are within the legal powers of the local legislative bodies to enact; and
3.      If any time before the initiative is held, the local legislative body shall adopt in toto the proposition presented, the initiative shall be cancelled. However, those against such action may if they so desire, apply for initiative.

Is the initiative to change the Constitution applicable to revision?
No. An initiative to change the Constitution applies only to an amendment. Revision broadly implies a change that alters basic principle in the Constitution like altering the principle of separation of powers or the system of checks and balance. The initiative of the petitioners is a revision and not merely an amendment. (Lambino vs. COMELEC, G.R. No. 174153, 25 October 2006)

It is the power of the electorate to approve or reject legislation through an election called for that purpose.

1.      Referendum on Statutes‐ refers to a petition to approve or reject a law, or part thereof, passed by Congress
2.      Referendum on Local Law‐ refers to a petition to approve or reject a law, resolution or ordinance enacted by regional assemblies and local legislative bodies.

The following cannot be subject of an initiative or referendum:
1.      Petition embracing more than one subject shall be submitted to the electorate.
2.      Statutes involving emergency measures, the enactment of which is specifically vested in Congress by the Constitution, cannot be subject to referendum until 90 days after their effectivity. (Sec. 10 RA 6735)

Bernas, Joaquin G. The 1987 Philippine Constitution: A Comprehensive Reviewer.
Cruz, Isagani A. Philippine Political Law.
Nachura, Antonio B. Outline / Reviewer in Political Law.
Albano, Ed Vincent S. Political Law Reviewer.
Bernas, Joaquin G. The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines: A Commentary.
UST Reviewer on Political Law
San Beda Reviewer on  Political Law
UP reviewer on Political Law

The author takes no responsibility for the validity, correctness and result of this work. The information provided is not a legal advice and it should not be used  as a substitute for a competent legal advice from a licensed lawyer. See the disclaimer

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