We have passed a strong Anti-Terrorism Law for our security forces to better address terrorism in Mindanao and the rest of the country. Unfortunately, amidst the numerous petitions against the measure, the agencies tasked to craft the implementing rules and regulations of the law have not yet issued the same which could have given our law enforcement agencies and the AFP the impetus to fully implement the law with efficacy and confidence, even proactively as we have included even “inchoate offenses” punishable for even at the stage of planning and preparation.
With all that said, another declaration of martial law in Mindanao or Sulu may not be necessary.
A speedy but thorough determination of the facts that led to the tragic shooting of four Army officers by police in Sulu is critical and cannot be emphasized enough.
It is wise and proper that both Philippine National Police Chief P/Gen. Archie Gamboa and Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Felimon Santos Jr. have agreed that the National Bureau of Investigation take full control of the criminal investigation, and allow the evidence to dictate the findings.
But the NBI’s investigation results notwithstanding, and more than making fully accountable all those responsible for the incident, the ground commanders of both sides must be in full control of the situation to avoid an escalation of the situation.
Our security forces already have their hands full in their fight against their common adversaries such as terrorism and insurgency in Mindanao. Allowing disunity in any form would give the enemy an unwanted advantage that could prove fatal for our nation.
In an interview on DZBB/GNTV, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– thwarting possible attempts to insert pork in the P4.1-trillion proposed 2020 budget via bicam
– ‘most behaved’ House with P9.5B institutional amendments in the budget bill
– release of funds to address recent calamities
In an interview on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on: – need for transparency in the bicameral conference committee on the 2019 budget
– DBM Sec. Diokno’s claim that deleting P75B from DPWH budget may harm economy
– US NGO’s claim that PH is a ‘war zone in disguise’
– Sri Lankan president’s reported intent to ‘copy” PH war vs drugs
– ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law and efforts to reach out to Nur Misuari
– Sen. Pacquiao’s bout vs Adrien Broner
At the Kapihan sa Senado forum, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– return of the Balangiga Bells from the US to PH
– portrayal of PNP leadership in ‘FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano’
– suspension of excise tax on fuel products in 2019
– President Duterte’s supposed ‘power nap’ at the ASEAN Summit
– possible arrest of former First Lady Imelda Marcos
– bringing down VAT and cutting the number of exemptions
– possible Senate inquiry into recent killing of local executives
– rogue cops abusing their authority amid a pay raise starting January 2019
– prospective third telco
– DICT leadership change
– legislation transferring training of police recruits from PPSC to PNP
– ‘rampant corruption’ at Customs
– possible extension of martial law in Mindanao
In an interview, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– mulitbillion-peso wastage of taxpayers’ money due to RROW issues
– need for government to shift focus to the economy
– possible food crisis
– on Pagcor action on PH offshore gambling operations
– recent bombings
Hindi uubra para masawata ang karahasan sa Mindanao ang napapabalitang pagpapalawig pa sa implementasyon ng martial law at maging ang kakasabatas pa lamang na Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL).
Ito ang naging tugon ni Senador at dating Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Panfilo Lacson na kasalukuyan din na Chairman ng Senate Committee on Public Order and Illegal Drugs nang tanungin siya ng mga mamamahayag sa Senado tungkol sa naturang usapin.
“The recent bombing incident in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat suggests that neither martial law nor the Bangsamoro Organic Law could guarantee peace in Mindanao,” banggit ni Lacson.
The government may soon gain a much-needed boost in its fight against terrorism, with a bill filed by Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson.
Senate Bill 1956, the proposed “Anti-Terrorism Act of 2018,” enhances the Human Security Act of 2007 with provisions on foreign terrorists and additional predicate crimes.
“While an anti-terror law in itself cannot solve the problem of terrorism, an intensified one can however give the government and the law enforcement agencies the much-needed tool in dealing with the emerging threats of terrorism,” said Lacson, who headed the Philippine National Police from 1999 to 2001 and who played a key role in crafting the Human Security Act of 2007 (Republic Act 9372).
It only suggests that neither martial law nor the Bangsamoro Organic Law could guarantee peace in Mindanao. Instead, it is my view that the National Security Council and our ground security forces should take a hard look at their security plans and strategy, especially in the South, and try to avert the vicious cycle of talking peace with one tribal group while alienating the others.
Thus, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front came into being and developed themselves into the dominant armed force in Mindanao after we dealt peace with the Moro National Liberation Front. As it may be shaping now, as we make peace with the MILF, a breakaway group is sowing terror.
Having said that, I filed a Senate bill to enhance the Human Security Act of 2007, which has not been proving itself effective in addressing terrorism in our country.
The Bangsamoro Organic Law is not perfect, but is a big leap towards peace in Mindanao. Or so we hope. Much credit goes to President Duterte and his strong political will in this regard.
I would have wanted the creation of two sub-regions under one Bangsamoro Autonomous Region. I have in fact suggested that to the President in one of our small group meetings in Malacanang. It is my view that we could do away with the possible breakaway factions from the Tausog and other ethnic groups from the Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and Palawan group of islands.
We should learn from history when the Maguindanaoans and Maranaws and others from Central Mindanao broke away and formed the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) when the central government talked peace with Misuari’s Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF).