martial law in mindanao

Sen. Bam Aquino votes to reject Martial Law extension

Senator Bam Aquino voted to reject the government’s call to extend Martial Law in Mindanao because of the absence of actual rebellion now that firefighting in Marawi City has ceased.
Sen. Bam mentioned that in the deliberations of the 1987 Constitution, the framers used the word actual instead of imminent so as not to create confusion and not to give the President a wide latitude of discretion which may be abused.
Also, Sen. Bam believes that the one-year extension is too long, which could abrogate the Congress’ duty on check and balances, which is provided by the Constitution among the branches of government.
“One year seems unreasonable. It is akin to being indefinite as there are no clear milestones to reach and no distinct reasons for needing an entire year,” said Sen. Bam.
“The period of the original declaration is 60 days. Any extension should be reckoned in this light, so 1 whole year really seems grossly unreasonable,” said Sen. Bam.
Sen. Bam stressed that Martial Law is an extraordinary measure and that the military should not need Martial Law in order to function well and keep Mindanao secure.
“The reasons given by the Executive are persistent all over the country, not just in Mindanao. The logic used in the request for extension can easily be used to declare nationwide Martial Law,” warned Sen. Bam.

No to Martial Law Extension in Mindanao. Yes to Swift, Corruption-free Rehab: Statement of Senators Aquino, Drilon, Hontiveros, Pangilinan, Trillanes

We, members of the minority, support the position of Mindanaoans for NO martial law extension in their home island. Lifting military rule, specifically in Marawi, will hasten the return of affected residents to their homes, according to its citizens. 
Martial law, together with the air strikes, was the reason why they fled Marawi in the early days of the Maute siege. And martial law is also the reason why they are afraid to return, even in cleared areas. 
After the pronounced liberation of Marawi and the announced focus on rehabilitation and trade, what will be the role of the people of Marawi in the planning and rehabilitation of their city? 
What guarantees do they have that they can return to their old location and start life anew? As security forces reign supreme during martial law, would not military rule actually get in the way of a people-centered rebuilding and rehabilitating of the once vibrant city? What is the need for martial law? Would martial law suspend bidding for the reconstruction of the city?

Bam: Limit ML extension

Congress must perform its duty of limiting the duration of Martial Law to ensure that checks and balances in government remain.

This was stressed by Sen. Bam Aquino during his brief manifestation during the special session to discuss the Martial Law extension being requested by President Duterte.

“I would definitely try to move for a shorter period of time,” Sen. Bam told Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.

 “Nakasaad sa Konstitusyon na kapangyarihan at tungkulin ng lehislatura ang magdesisyon ukol sa pag-extend ng Martial Law. Kaya’t ang mas maikling panahon na 60 days ay hindi deadline, bagkus isang pamamaraan na kung saan nagagawa ng lehislatura ang aming tungkulin,” the senator said.

“At hindi ba nararapat lang na humingi ng pagsang-ayon ang militar sa mga sibilyan na awtoridad?” he added.

The senator reiterated the Congress’ support for the military, saying lawmakers are ready to provide soldiers the necessary equipment and legislative reforms they need to quell the terrorism in Marawi once and for all.

  “Iyong Modernization Act kailangang ipagpatuloy, baka kailangang i-amend ang Procurement Act at iba pang mga batas upang magawa niyo ang trabaho nang maayos,” said Sen. Bam, to which Sec. Lorenzana agreed to.

However, Sen. Bam stressed the need to be prudent about the Martial Law extension to completely quell terrorism in Mindanao.

 “Let us not forget that it is robust development – education, jobs, business and livelihood – that will ultimately beat terrorism,” said Sen. Bam.

The senator added that Martial Law will not help achieve economic development and rehabilitation of the affected areas.

Sen. Bam on Supreme Court decision on Martial Law

We respect the decision of the Supreme Court and continue to support our Armed Forces at the front lines of this battle.

 Still, we must remain vigilant and safeguard the rights of our countrymen until the firefight ends and Martial Law is lifted.

Let’s focus on giving displaced Filipino families the support they need and be ready to pour all efforts to rebuilding Marawi, reestablishing our schools, and creating jobs and livelihood for the community.

Sen. Bam: Joint session is Congress’ duty

Sen. Bam Aquino insisted that convening a joint session is a duty of Congress and a means to promote welfare of the Filipino people by enlightening them about details behind the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao.

 “It is part of our constitutional requirement and important for the public to be able to listen for themselves kung ano ang sasabihin ng security managers,” said Sen. Bam during Tuesday night’s discussion on the minority group’s Senate Resolution 390, which urges Congress to hold a joint session on the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao.

“During a joint session, iyong ibang pinag-usapan natin during an executive session, kung bakit nagdeklara ng Martial Law, kung ano ang plano at kung hanggang kailan ang hangganan, puwede iyong marinig ng taumbayan,” said Sen. Bam.

 As representatives of the people, Sen. Bam said it is the duty of lawmakers to inform the public details of important issues affecting their lives and the country.

 “The people need to know what it is we also know as much as possible, without breaching any national security matter,” the senator said, adding that Congress must follow its constitutional mandate whatever the outcome of the vote.

 In an earlier interview, Sen. Bam emphasized that a joint session will give security managers a chance to enlighten the public about the situation and address misinformation and fake news circulating online at the same time.

“The people are contradicting each other. Agencies are contradicting each other in terms of facts and in terms of what’s really happening. We need to hear it straight from the security managers,” Sen. Bam pointed out.

 Nine senators voted in favor of the resolution while 12 voted against it. Aside from Sen. Bam, those who voted in favor were Sens. Franklin Drilon, Chiz Escudero, Sherwin Gatchalian, Risa Hontiveros, Francis Pangilinan, Grace Poe, Ralph Recto and Antonio Trillanes.

Those who voted against it were Senators Sonny Angara, Nancy Binay, JV Ejercito, Richard Gordon, Gregorio Honasan, Panfilo Lacson, Loren Legarda, Manny Pacquiao, Tito Sotto, Cynthia Villar, Juan Miguel Zubiri and Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III.

Sen. Bam: No shortcuts, call joint session

A senator called on his fellow lawmakers to avoid shortcuts and follow the Constitution by calling a joint session to tackle the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao.

“Ang AFP, ayaw natin mag-shortcut, ang PNP ayaw nating mag-shortcut. Bakit tayo mag-so-short cut?” said Sen. Bam Aquino during the minority bloc’s press conference discussing their resolution urging the Senate to call for a joint session.

 “Hindi tayo puwedeng mag-shortcut. Iyong mga shortcut, ito ang nagdudulot ng masasamang bagay sa bansa natin,” he added.

 Under the Constitution, Sen. Bam also stressed that Congress is mandated to call a joint session, based on the precedent during former president Gloria Arroyo’s declaration of Martial Law in Maguindanao in 2009.

 “A joint session is needed so that people can hear for themselves what the security managers were able to brief to us,” Sen. Bam said in an earlier television interview Tuesday.

 The senator said a joint session will give security managers a chance to enlighten the public about the situation and address misinformation and fake news circulating online at the same time.

“The people are contradicting each other. Agencies are contradicting each other in terms of facts and in terms of what’s really happening. We need to hear it straight from the security managers,” Sen. Bam pointed out.

 Sen. Bam said the security managers assured that normalcy in Marawi City will be restored in the next few days but it is crucial for the “people to hear that themselves”.

 During the briefing, Sen. Bam got the assurance from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) that it will uphold human rights while Mindanao is under Martial Law.

 Despite the AFP’s assurance, Sen. Bam underscored the need for vigilance against any abuse that might occur until normalcy returns to the area, which the AFP committed to achieve in the following days.

Once the government quells the threats in Marawi, Sen. Bam said the government must lift Martial Law immediately and focus on restoring normalcy and developing in the area.

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