There are few senators conveyed concerns on President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of “State of Lawlessness” in the whole nation after the bomb explosion that happened in Davao City night market last September 2, Friday evening.
President Duterte’s critic, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, mentioned in a text message that the declaration of state of lawlessness was “not warranted at this time”. Sen. Trillanes also said, “What is needed is less big talking and more serious intel (intelligence) work”.
He added that the assault to Davao’s night market was a “grim reminder” that the illegal drug issue is not the biggest and only national security threat to the Philippines.
In an interview with the media early Saturday morning, the President explained that placing the whole Philippines under state of lawlessness merely calls for increased police and also military presence in the streets particularly in metropolitan areas.
He further stated that both AFP and PNP presence all over the nation isn’t just for fighting terror threats but will also step up Duterte’s crusade towards illegal drugs and also to suppress the recent increase in extrajudicial killings.
On the other hand, Senate President Pro-Tempore Franklin Drilon views the Davao blast as an “isolated incident”.
While he condemns the attack, Drilon doesn’t see the need to enlist military’s assistance in police operations in the whole nation. However, he was quick to add that he defers to Duterte’s judgment.
Sen. Drilon said, “While I do not see any widespread lawless violence in other parts of the country to justify calling on the Armed Forces of the Philippines to surpass such lawless violence, I defer to the judgment of the President who has access to intelligence information”.
Sen. Drilon said President Duterte should set clear guidelines on the execution of the “state of lawlessness” “to allay the fears of the people” and because of the declaration’s likely impact on the economy, investment, business climate as well as in tourism.
Senator Ralph Recto also has an identical view with Senator Drilon.
Sen. Recto mentioned that by placing parameters of the declaration into writing wouldn’t simply eliminate confusion and fears, but will also specify the boundaries of the authorities.
“A written order will prescribe the specifics and the limits of such declaration, and would result in the clearer enumeration of the activities permitted and prohibited, if any, during the period,” said Sen. Recto.