Pangilinan: 3 gov’t branches should work together, stop word war
Instead of engaging in word war, Sen. Francis Pangilinan on Wednesday called on the three branches of government to come together “to address issues and challenges to the rule of law.”
“Let us work together. In light of the latest exchange of words between President Rodrigo Duterte and Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno, we reiterate our call to convene the Joint Judicial, Executive, and Legislative Advisory and Consultative Council (JJELACC),” Pangilinan said in a statement.
“Instead of this word war between the two branches of government and in response to the spate of extrajudicial killings, we should focus on working together to coordinate efforts at modernizing our judiciary and system of justice.”
“Let all three branches of government come together to address issues and challenges to the rule of law. Word war is not good for our constitutional democracy,” Pangilinan said.
The senator made the call amid Duterte’s warning to Sereno not to create a crisis or else he “will order everybody in the executive department not to honor [the Chief Justice].”
The President also raised the possibility of declaring martial law if the Supreme Court gets in the way in the government’s war on illegal drugs.
“The President may be joking because an order to disobey a legal order or a decision of the Supreme Court is against the Constitution,” Pangilinan said.
Sen. Sonny Angara, meanwhile, doubts whether the President will indeed resort to martial law in the fight against illegal drugs.
“Well, sabi nga ni (Communications Secretary Martin) Andanar, rhetorical question lang ’yun. Sinasabi lang niya bilang isang executive, kailangan mabilis ang kilos para kapag hinadlangan siya ng ibang ahensya, siguro yun ang last resort niya,” Angara said in an interview.
“Pero hindi naman ako naniniwala na he (Duterte) will resort to it. In fact, habang nagsasalita siya ay meron tayong Senate hearing on emergency powers. Ito, hindi naman ito sa droga kundi sa pagreresolba sa traffic issue. Hindi ako naniniwala na magkaka-martial law. I don’t think it’s a serious remark,” he said.
The Senate has started its deliberations on the proposed granting of emergency powers to Duterte to address the traffic mess in Metro Manila and other urban areas.
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