Duterte’s troop deployment order triggers martial law fears – Robredo
Vice President Leni Robredo said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to deploy more soldiers and police officers to Samar, Negros Oriental, Negros Occidental, and the Bicol region triggered fears that it may lead to the declaration of martial law.
“Natatakot iyong mga tao na baka parang platform ito para mag-deklara ng martial law na palagay ng lahat, kahit pa may ambush dito, hindi naman kailangan,” she said during her weekly radio show.
(The people are afraid that this may turn out as a platform to declare martial law. There may be instances of ambuscades but deploying additional troops to certain areas is not necessary).
Robredo said that while she does not see any problem with augmentation of police and military forces, she cautioned the use of the term “lawless violence” as it can be used as a ground to declare martial law.
“Wala tayong objection sa pag-augment. Very welcome iyon na balita na i-o-augment iyong ating kapulisan ng mga miyembro ng AFP (We don’t have any objection to troop augmentation, it is a welcome move.),” she said.
“Pero marami kasing, parang, distrust. Maraming hindi…[…] masyadong klaro iyong pinaka-sadya, maraming natatakot kapag ginamit na iyong term na lawless violence. Lawless violence kasi isa sa grounds ng pag-deklara ng Martial Law,” she added.
(But there is distrust because the intent is not clear. Many have fears that “lawless violence” could be used as a ground to declare martial law.)
The vice president suggested that the administration should instead focus on addressing the insurgency problem.
“Mas dapat sagutin bakit ba in the last two years, tumindi na naman iyong insurgency. Tingin ko, iyon iyong mas kailangang tutukan kasi nawala na iyan eh. Noong nakaraang administrasyon, halos wala na talaga. Kailangang pag-aralan bakit ba bumalik?” Robredo noted.
(The government should focus on the insurgency. I think it is the issue that needs attention because, in the previous administration, the insurgency problem had been minimized. We need to study its resurgence).
“Bakit ba lumalakas ulit? Hindi sapat na, parang, response iyong pag-deklara na may lawless violence. Tama na i-augment pero tingin ko, iyong pag-augment, isa lang na paraan para makakatulong. Ang dapat balikan, bakit? Bakit tumindi iyong insurgency?” she added.
(It is not enough to declare that there is lawless violence. I think it is right to augment the troops, but we need to look at insurgency more closely.)
Duterte issued Memorandum Order No. 32 ordering the deployment of more soldiers and policemen to “suppress lawless violence and acts of terror” in Negros, Samar and the Bicol region. /ee
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