Thursday, May 25, 2017

Retired SC Justice and UP Law professor defends Duterte's declation of martial law

Retired SC Justice and UP Law professor defends Duterte's declation of martial law
"The declaration of Martial law in Mindanao is justified and needed."

This was the statement of retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Vicente Mendoza after President Duterte declared Martial law amid clash between government forces and the local terrorist Maute group in Marawi City.

“You cannot speak of violation of the Bill of Rights when there’s martial law and the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is effective,” Mendoza told media on Wednesday.

“You cannot speak of that because you have to look at it from the military’s point of view,” he explained. “If you’re the military, will you go to the court to get a warrant? No more. You will just arrest suspected rebels.”

The retired justice said the underlying data given by authorities demonstrated that there was "truly a need" to place Mindanao under military manage and to incidentally renounce the benefit of the writ of habeas corpus.

“Based on what I have heard, I think there’s rebellion over there in Marawi and that public safety really requires the declaration of martial law,” Mendoza said.

“If the President’s judgment is correct or not in declaring martial law, it’s not for me nor for anyone (to decide). That is the prerogative of the President," he added.

Another law expert came to back up Duterte’s decision on announcing to enforce Martial Law in entire Mindanao.

Pacifico Agabin, the former Dean of the University of the Philippines said that the government have the right to restrict the people from travelling and limit them from freedom of assembly while Martial Law was enforced.

Source/s: Inquirer, Paula Defensor-Knack


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