LAWMAKERS yesterday strongly urged the Filipinos to rally behind President Rodrigo Duterte and stand united with him in his strong resolve to address terrorism and peace and order concerns in the wake of the deadly bombing on Friday night in Davao City allegedly perpetrated by the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).
Leyte Rep. Yedda Marie Romualdez, Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Deputy Speaker Batangas Rep. Raneo Abu condemned in the strongest possible terms the barbaric act that massacred 14 people and injuring 60 others in Davao City.
Romualdez urged the Filipinos to continue to rally behind President Duterte for a much strong, solid and united campaign against terrorism and called on them to “exercise caution.”
“We share their (victims and survivors) pain and sadness for this very unfortunate barbaric terrorist attacks of unprecedented level. Every Filipino should exercise caution and always be on guard,” said Romualdez, stressing the fight against terrorism becomes a major battle of the whole world and remains far from over.
Alvarez and Abu backed President Duterte’s declaration of state of lawlessness to address the violence and acts of terrorism.
“I fully support President Duterte’s declaration of a state of lawless violence not just in Davao City but throughout the country. This will give our law enforcers and the military the means to carry out deterrent measures not just against further acts of terror but also against other forms of criminality, including trafficking in illegal drugs,” Alvarez said.
For his part, Abu said: “I fully support President Duterte’s declaration of a state of lawlessness which is in consonance with the 1987 Constitution, allowing the President to call on the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to prevent or suppress lawless violence.”
“There is no suspension of the Writ of Habeas Corpus and there will be no curfew imposed. In these extraordinary times, I don’t see anything irregular if the soldiers and police are authorized to conduct searches in accordance with the orchestration of the national government,” said Abu amid apprehensions of some critics that it might lead to more extrajudicial killings and other human rights violations.
While President Duterte has the power to declare a state of lawlessness, Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano said it should be declared only in Mindanao.
“I believe na dapat sa Mindanao natin i-declare ‘yun,” Alejano, a retired military officer, yesterday told Rowena Salvacion’s Buena Manong Balita radio morning show over dzBB.
Alejano also called on the Filipinos to support President Duterte’s strong resolve to address terrorism and bring the perpetrators to justice.
Davao City Rep. Karlo Nograles, who chairs the House Committee on Appropriations, said: “We condemn in the strongest sense the terroristic attack against innocent civilians of Davao City. We pray for the victims of the blast and their families, and assure them of government’s support.
We also pray for those responsible for this abhorrent act, that you may realize humankind will not succumb to hatred. If you pursue your wicked agenda at the cost of innocent lives, it will only strengthen the people’s resolve to reject it.”