Retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz slammed House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez for "playing God" by vowing to crack the whip on lawmakers who will vote against the restoration of the death penalty.
This, after Alvarez warned that those who will vote against the restoration of capital punishment will be stripped of deputy speakership and committee chairmanship posts in the lower House.
"Unang-una, he is playing God," Cruz said in an interview with Church-run Radio Veritas. "Para bang siya ang may utos ng huwag kang papatay at siya rin ang magsasabi kung sino ang papatayin mo o hindi."
(First, he is playing God. It seemed that the 'thou shall not kill' commandment came from him so he himself has the authority to decide who to kill or not.)
Cruz, a former Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president, also criticized the removal of plunder from the list of crimes punishable by death.
"The boss of Congress is acting purely on political motives. Meaning to say, kung ano ang sinabi ng boss ay siyang gagawin. Nakakahiya. Nakakasama ng loob," Cruz added.
(The boss of the lower House is acting purely on political motives. Meaning to say, whatever the boss says, everyone should follow.
It's shameful. It pains me.) One of the lawmakers who received a warning from Alvarez was Deputy Speaker Gloria Arroyo, former president and current representative of Pampanga's second district.