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May 11 Elections for Legislature Called by Aquino

November 06, 1986|Associated Press

MANILA — President Corazon Aquino on Wednesday scheduled elections for a national legislature on May 11, but she turned down suggestions for a new presidential election as urged by her outspoken defense minister.

Aquino said elections for local officials will be conducted soon after balloting for the National Assembly, but that date will be announced later.

"I believe that we should heed as soon as possible the clamor of our people to elect the legislators as well as the local officials of their choice," Aquino said in a television interview.

Filipinos already are scheduled to vote Feb. 2 on a new constitution drafted by an Aquino-appointed commission. The constitution would replace the "freedom constitution" proclaimed by Aquino in March, one month after she took office in a military-civilian revolt that ousted President Ferdinand E. Marcos.

Full 6-Year Term

The new charter would keep Aquino in office for a full six-year term, until June 30, 1992, despite protests by Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile that she forfeited her mandate to govern by scrapping Marcos' 13-year-old constitution.

Aquino argues that she was elected to a six-year term in a fraud-ridden presidential balloting shortly before Marcos' ouster and that her victory still stands despite the change in constitutions. The National Assembly dominated by Marcos proclaimed him the election winner.

Election of new legislators and local officials would remove a major complaint against the Aquino government.

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