In a press briefing in Malacañang the other day, President Rodrigo Duterte assured the public that the implementation of the Anti-Terrorism Law will not lead to abuses. Some concerned human rights advocates, however, are not convinced of the President’s assurance. Thus, the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and some legal luminaries, including some members of Congress like Bicolano lawmaker Edsel Lagman of Albay, have filed Petition for Certiorari with the Court of Appeals seeking the nullity of the law. Made respondents are the Secretary of Local Government Eduardo Ano, Speaker of the House Alan Peter Cayetano, and Senate President Vicente Sotto III.
Sometime ago we wrote in this column, and I quote, “the expressions of concern for the passage of the bill are not without basis. Under existing law and jurisprudence, a warrantless arrest may be effected by an apprehending law enforcement officer when a crime is actually being committed in his presence, or is about to be committed, or there is a reasonable suspicion that the suspect has just committed the offense”.
From latest tv and print media reports, it would appear that the Supreme Court has consolidated all the Petitions and required the respondents public officials to file their respective comments of the Petition after which the case shall be considered submitted for decision. Indeed, the general public is awaiting the decision of the Supreme Court with bated breath, considering how they are personally affected by the issue. It is our hope that the Court will decide independently on the matter, and will not be influenced by political loyalties.
Greetings to Atty. Gilbert Morandarte, who recently celebrated his 51st birthday anniversary with a fellowship dinner at their residence here in Naga. Gilbert is the former Dean of the UNC College of law, and has finished his Master of Law degree at San Beda College of Law, and is now in the process of his dissertation for his Doctor of Laws degree. Congratulations and may you have many more birthdays to come. One of Gilbert’s daughters is my god-daughter.
Through this column, I would like to extend in my own behalf and that of my spouse Minda our most heartfelt and sincere condolences to the family of the late Frank Deocareza who crossed the Great Beyond after a lingering illness. Officers and members of the Knights of Columbus, Mons Jorge Barlin Assembly, ACN 1591, offered a Chaplet at the Imperial Memorial Chapel the before his internment. Frank was my comptroller when I was the Faithful Navigator of the Assembly about six years ago. Frank was known for his honesty and dedication to duty. We will surely miss him but we are consoled by the thought that he is now in the warm embrace of the Lord.
QUOTATION OF THE WEEK:
“NO NATION CAN ENDURE UNLESS IT IS BASED ON A SOUND MANHOOD AND SOLID CITIZENSHIP.
FOR OUR WORD OF LIFE:
“I WILL PRAISE YOU. LORD. WITH ALL WITH ALL MY HEART I WILL DECLARE ALL YOUR WONDROUS DEEDS.”