This is how Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II finest describes the petition filed by congressmen of the minority block who requested the Supreme Court (SC) to nullify President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of martial law over Mindanao.
“Waste basket lang yun,” stated Aguirre.
The Secretary reminded “nagdesisyon na separately ang House at tsaka ang Senate that they are backing the declaration of martial law as sufficient in compliance sa law at tsaka sa facts.”
“Ngayon pag ganun na wala na magagawa ang supreme court when it is very clear na hindi arbitrary ang pag deklara ng presidente ng martial law,” stated Aguirre.
Albay 1st District Representative Edcel Lagmay and different opposition congressman filed the petition on Monday, June 5, after authorities officers performed briefings earlier than each Congress and Senate on President Rodrigo Duterte’s Proclamation No. 216 which declared martial law over Mindanao. The different petitioners are Akbayan party-list Rep. Tomasito Villarin, Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano, Capiz 1st District Rep. Emmanuel Billones, Ifugao Rep. Teddy Baguilat Jr., and Caloocan 2nd District Rep. Edgar Erice.
“After due proceedings, issue a Decision voiding and nullifying Proclamation No. 216 dated 23 May 2017 for utter lack of sufficient factual basis,” requested the petitioners.
“There is no revolution or invasion where the public safety requires the declaration of martial law and the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus in Marawi City or elsewhere in Mindanao,” the petitioners informed the SC.
The lawmakers argued, amongst others, “both the Proclamation and Report highlighted acts of terrorism which did not or do not constitute rebellion.”
“As admitted by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre during the briefing before the House Committee of the Whole, acts of terrorism do not automatically constitute rebellion,” stated the petitioners.
The petitioners additionally identified, “it is clear that the armed resistance by the Maute group was not to lay “siege” on Marawi City however to protect terrorist leaders [Isnilon] Hapilon and the Maute brothers.”
They indicated that Deputy Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Salvador Mison Jr. himself admitted in the course of the briefings that the conflict in Marawi City was “government-initiated” as a result of army operation meant to seize or neutralize Hapilon.