Dureza: Duterte martial law so different from Marcos’
MANILA — Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza has assured the public that the martial law declared by President Rodrigo Duterte is not intended to curtail the freedom and rights of the Filipinos.
Dureza, speaking before members of the Philippine Press Institute attending its 21st National Press Forum in Manila on Wednesday, said Mr. Duterte’s martial rule was different from the martial law declared during the Marcos regime because Duterte’s declaration only covered Mindanao.
He added that President Duterte resorted to martial law only to contain the attacks in Marawi City, particularly in areas occupied by members of the pro-Islamic State (IS) Maute group, which Dureza described as a “terrorist armed group.” The Maute Group has allied with members of the Abu Sayyaf led by Isnilon Hapilon.
Dureza took note of how the attacks have resulted in a “big exodus of residents” from Marawi City as fighting continued between government forces and the Maute-Abu sayyaf elements in various areas in the city.
A martial rule, he added, would allow the administration to crush the terrorists.
Dureza said martial law was declared because the civilian authority in Marawi City had broken down and could no longer take care of the situation on its own, thus requiring the intervention of the military.
He emphasized one big difference between the Marcos martial rule and the Duterte martial law: the Constitution remains effective and the President is duty bound to report the imposition to Congress within 48 hours from the declaration.
The Duterte martial rule imposition is limited to only 60 days, which Congress can choose to revoke before its expiration or extend it beyond 60 days, according to Dureza.
“The regular courts are (also) mandated to continue functioning. Constitutional rights will continue to be upheld,” Dureza stressed. SFM/rga
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