Saguisag blasts Duterte: He listened to public outcry vs Sanchez but not on Marcos burial
MANILA, Philippines — Former Senator Rene Saguisag on Wednesday criticized President Rodrigo Duterte for listening to public outcry against the possible release of convicted rapist-murderer Antonio Sanchez but not against the hero’s burial for late dictator Ferdinand Marcos in 2016.
“Given the outcry, I am just amazed that sentiments were not considered by Mr. Duterte when he moved surreptitiously the remains of Mr. Marcos. Kung relevant ‘yung sentiments of the victims [If the sentiments of the victims are relevant], that should have applied to the victims, of the families of the victims of human rights violations,” he said in an interview with CNN Philippines.
Duterte had earlier ordered the Department of Justice to ensure that Sanchez, who was convicted for the rape and murder of University of the Philippines-Los Baños students Eileen Sarmenta and friend Allan Gomez in 1993, will not be released sooner under the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) given to inmates who had shown good behavior during jail time.
According to Malacañang, Sanchez is not eligible for the GCTA since the crime he committed was heinous. Section 1 of the Republic Act 10592 mandating the GCTA states that “recidivists, habitual delinquents, escapees, and persons charged with heinous crimes are excluded from the coverage” of the Act.
But while pointing out that Duterte’s argument was correct, Saguisag said that the Chief Executive should have let Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra to speak instead.
He explained that the President meddling with a lot of other issues has become the “system” now.
“Yan ang sistema natin ngayon eh [That is the system now]. He was not only super executive, super court, super legislature, and a one-man continuing constitutional convention. Once he speaks, tupi lahat (everyone obeys),” he said.
“The President does not really have to comment on every little thing pero correct siya [but he is correct],” he said. /jpv
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.