Palace unfazed amid another petition vs Mindanao martial rule extension
Malacañang remained unfazed even after another petition questioning the legality of the martial law extension in Mindanao was filed before the Supreme Court (SC).
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque asserted on Friday that the extension of martial rule in Mindanao until December 2018 “enjoys overwhelming presumption of constitutionality.”
“The declaration of martial law, the extension for a year enjoys overwhelming presumption of constitutionality, given that both the executive and the legislative branches of government have found both legal and factual basis for the declaration of martial law,” Roque said in a televised press briefing in Valencia City, Bukidnon.
Former Human Rights Chairperson Loretta Ann Rosales, through lawyers Florin Hilbay and Teddy Esteban Rigoros, filed a petition on Friday before the high court to nullify the extension of martial law in Mindanao,
“Of course we welcome the filing of the suit because that is also the right of any citizen under the 1987 Constitution,” Roque said.
Similarly, human rights advocates and militant groups had earlier questioned before the SC the legality of the extension of martial law in Mindanao.
Roque since maintained that the government can defend the legality of the extension of martial law in Mindanao before the high court.
Duterte declared martial law in the whole of Mindanao on May 23 after Islamic State-inspired Maute terrorist group attacked Marawi City in an attempt to establish a caliphate there.
Almost two months later, Congress allowed Duterte’s request to extend martial rule in the entire Mindanao region until December 31, 2017.
Voting 240-27 with no abstention during a special joint session on December 13, Congress authorized the extension of martial rule in Mindanao for the second time until end of December 2018. /kga