MANILA - Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Wednesday taunted President Rodrigo Duterte for floating the idea of Martial Law to combat illicit drugs and lawlessness.
In a press statement, Trillanes scornfully asked Duterte to explain why authoritarian rule would be needed when he has already promised to curb the narcotics menace within the first six months of his administration.
"Akala ko ba 3 to 6 months lang kaya niya nang tapusin ang drug problem or else magre-resign s'ya? Tapos ngayon kailangan na mag martial law? Anyare? Nag-supermoon?" the senator said.
(I thought he will end the drug problem in three to six months or else he'll resign. And now he's saying that Martial Law is needed. What happened, the supermoon?)
The President on Tuesday said that while is he is not keen on declaring Martial Law, authoritarian rule may be the key to containing widespread violence in Mindanao. Duterte's statement comes days after his warning that he may suspend the writ of habeas corpus, if needed, to combat lawlessness in Mindanao and boost his anti-narcotics drive.
According to the Constitution, the president may lift the writ for periods of up to 60 days "in case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it.
" The same clause allows for Martial Law to be invoked.