Duterte to declare martial law if situation in PH turns ‘virulent’
Not even the Supreme Court could stop him if he wanted to declare martial law.
President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday night said no one could stop him from declaring martial law if the situation in the Philippines becomes “virulent.”
“Kung gusto ko, and if it will deteriorate into something really very virulent, I will declare martial law if I want to. Walang makapigil sa akin (If I wanted to…no one can stop me),” Duterte said in his speech during the oath-taking ceremony of the Trustees and Officers of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce in Davao City.
But the President said he would declare martial law not on the basis of invasion or insurrection but to preserve the country.
“If I have to declare martial law, I will declare it, not because of invasion, insurrection, I will declare martial law to preserve my nation, period,” he said.
External Invasion is one of the conditions in the 1987 Constitution for the chief executive to declare martial law.
Duterte mentioned about martial law as he was speaking on the problem of illegal drugs in the country.
Under the Constitution, the President would need to submit a report to Congress within 48 hours after his declaration of martial law. Congress can vote to revoke the declaration.
Duterte earlier said he wanted the declaration of martial law to be the prerogative of the chief executive without the approval of Congress and the Supreme Court.
Also enshrined in the Constitution was the right of the any citizen to question the declaration of martial law before the Supreme Court.
But the President said he was ready not to heed the high court if the situation calls for it.
Wala akong pakialam diyan sa (I don’t care about the) Supreme Court because of the right to preserve one’s life and my nation. My country transcends everything else, even the limitation,” he said
Holding a thick bundle of papers, Duterte showed his thick “narcolist,” which he claimed contained names of politicians, judges and policemen.
He said four million Filipinos were now slaves of drug addiction.
The President did not end his speech without slamming his critics, who claimed that he wanted to declare martial law to extend his term.
“Those in Manila thinking about martial law, lengthening your stay . . . B*lsh*t,” he said.
“I do not need the presidency at this point in my life,” he added.
Duterte has launched a brutal crackdown on illegal drugs since he assumed in office in June 30, 2016. As of posting time, more than 6, 000 suspected drug addicts have been killed under the administrations no-nonsense war on illegal drugs. TVJ
READ: THE KILL LIST
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