Senate minority bloc to fight death penalty return ‘tooth and nail’ — Drilon
MANILA, Philippines — The four-member minority bloc in the Senate will fight the return of the death penalty “tooth and nail” despite the push being given by President Rodrigo Duterte, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said Tuesday.
“As I said before, it may appear as an uphill battle, but we (opposition senators) are more than prepared to oppose it,” Drilon said in a statement.
“We do not agree that death penalty is the solution to our illegal drugs and corruption problems. Death penalty is ant-poor,” he added.
In his fourth Sona, the President cited the May 2017 Marawi City siege as a reason to “advocate the imposition of the death penalty for crimes related to illegal drugs.”
He also called on Congress to include plunder among the crimes punishable by death.
However, Drilon reasoned that the county has a “weak justice system that is very prone to error” and it should be strengthened so that the public would know that laws are working.
Despite his disapproval of the restoration of the death penalty, Drilon has expressed support for some of the President’s “wish-list” to Congress, particularly the proposed salary standardization law, pay hike for teachers, and the creation of a water department.
He added that the Senate minority had supported the additional excise tax on tobacco last 17th Congress. The bill is already on the President’s desk for approval.
The Senate minority is also ready to examine all the other measures mentioned in the President’s Sona, Drilon said.
“We are willing to listen and take a look at the proposals on the proposed tax reform law, the Land Use Act and the creation of the disaster management department,” he assured. /muf
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