1. A solemn oath – to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth – is exactly what it is – SOLEMN. To desecrate the solemnity of that oath, and worse, with the deliberate and evil purpose of destroying other people’s lives whom they could have succeeded in putting away for the rest of their lives by their lies, thus denying them the basic and sacred right to freedom, is most detestable.
Matatapos na ang pamamayagpag ng mga testigong nagbibigay ng mapanlinlang at pagsisinungaling na testimonya sa mga pagdinig para manira ng reputasyon at magpahamak ng ibang tao, matapos umusad na sa Senado ang panukalang nagbibigay ng pinabigat na parusa sa mga ito.
Sumalang na sa sponsorship sa plenaryo ang Senate Bill 1354 na natutungkol sa pagpapataw ng parusa sa mga nabanggit na klase ng testigo na ang pakay ay manira at manghiya sa publiko ng mga target nila.
Sinegundahan ni Senador Panfilo M. Lacson si Senador Richard Gordon sa pagsalang sa plenaryo ng panukala sa pamamagitan ng co-sponsorship, para matiyak na hindi na mangyayari sa iba ang masamang karanasan niya sa mga sumira sa kanyang pagkatao sa pamamagitan ng imbentong kuwento bilang testigo.
“It goes without saying that this measure will deter the commission of the crimes of false testimony and perjury in solemn affirmation and uphold the sacredness of oath in testimonies and sworn statements by increasing the penalty for their commission. It is for these reasons that I fully support the passage of this measure,” banggit ng mambabatas sa kanyang co-sponsorship speech sa hybrid session ng Senado noong Miyerkules.
To finally put an end to the practice of fake news and false testimonies meant to destroy people’s reputations, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson batted for the swift passage of a Senate bill providing heavier penalties against perjury.
Lacson – himself a victim of such false testimonies in the past – noted that while he had filed such a measure as early as 2011, it was left languishing in the legislative mill.
“It goes without saying that this measure will deter the commission of the crimes of false testimony and perjury in solemn affirmation and uphold the sacredness of oath in testimonies and sworn statements by increasing the penalty for their commission. It is for these reasons that I fully support the passage of this measure,” he said in his co-sponsorship speech for Senate Bill 1354, which he co-authored with Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Senators Richard Gordon and Leila de Lima, at the Senate hybrid session Wednesday.
Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, it is my honor to co-sponsor Senate Bill No. 1354 entitled ‘An Act Amending Articles 183 and 184 of Act No. 3815, As Amended, Otherwise Known as the Revised Penal Code,’ as embodied under Committee Report No. 49.
Somebody once said: “He who tells a lie, is not sensible how great a task he undertakes; for he must be forced to invent twenty more to maintain that one.” Nonetheless Mr. President, in my decades of experience as a public servant, I have come face to face with countless instances where a witness went the extra mile to invent hundreds of other lies just to maintain the first lie that he/she made under the sacred oath of truth.
I need not go far, Mr. President. I myself had been a victim of untruthful testimonies fabricated with the end goal of destroying my person. Never would I forget the unadorable persons answering the names of Ador Mawanay and Cezar Mancao, and a host of other characters who weaved unthinkable lies and narratives of the crimes that I supposedly committed.
Posibleng imbitahan ng Mataas na Kapulungan ng Kongreso anumang araw ngayong linggo ang lumutang na “Bikoy” upang isalang ito sa imbestigasyon, kung makakapagpakita ito ng dalawang katibayan.
Ayon kay Senador Panfilo Lacson, Chairman ng Senate Committee on Public Order and Illegal Drugs na siyang mangunguna sa imbestigasyon, kailangan lamang ni “Bikoy” na magdala ng sinumpaang salaysay at karagdagang mabibigat na dokumento kaugnay sa kanyang mga naunang paratang.
Kasama sa layunin ng magiging imbestigasyon ni Lacson na bumuo ng batas na magpapataw ng mas mabibigat na parusa sa pagsisinungaling, partikular na sa mga pagdinig na ginagawa ng lehislatura.
“I filed Senate Bill 253 to protect innocent people from being wrongly jailed or having their reputations suffer because of lying witnesses,” pagbabalik-tanaw ni Lacson na kung ilang beses na ring nabiktima ng mga imbentong akusasyon.
The Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs may hold a hearing on the claims made by “Bikoy” as early as within this week, but only if he personally presents his sworn statement and evidence to support his accusations.
Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson, who chairs the panel, said this in a post on his Twitter account Tuesday, as he noted “Bikoy” has become a political – if not an election – issue.
Lacson indicated one of the goals of the hearing would be to bolster proposed legislation providing heavier penalties against perjury, especially before congressional investigations.
“Like it or not, Bikoy has become a political, if not an election issue. The Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs can schedule a hearing this week on one condition: Bikoy must personally present a sworn statement and his evidence to support his accusations,” he said.
Mr. President, fellow members of this august chamber, I have the honor to report on the Senate floor the result of the inquiry, in aid of legislation, conducted by the Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs on the Privilege Speech of Sen. Antonio F. Trillanes IV regarding the public confession of retired SPO3 Arturo Lascañas on the existence of the Davao Death Squad (DDS), as embodied in Committee Report No. 97.
Mr. President, one night in September 2015, an ailing man while undergoing dialysis in a hospital in Davao City, dreamt that the devil was inside his room. The dream seemed so real, he even had flashbacks on certain incidents of his life, particularly the times when he killed people. He recalled calling the name of Jesus and made a promise to serve His will from thereon. Thereafter, he found himself saved by a child-like image appearing from a bright light. He then woke up from his dream and became a renewed man. That was the story of the spiritual awakening of Mr. Arturo Lascañas.
More than a year later, or on October 3, 2016, the same man was summoned by the Senate committee on justice and human rights to testify under oath as to the alleged existence of and the President’s participation and involvement in the Davao Death Squad (DDS). Before proceeding, he took an oath before everyone present in this very hall and in front of the entire nation, invoking the name of God to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
To protect innocent people from being wrongly jailed or having their reputations suffer because of lying witnesses, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson filed a bill imposing heavier penalties on those giving false testimonies.
Lacson, who had suffered harassment due to lying witnesses in the past, lamented false testimonies and sworn statements sometimes used to support malicious complaints to harass and persecute others are becoming prevalent.
“This pernicious practice is aimed not only to harass innocent persons but also to put them behind bars and make their families suffer. It is noteworthy that because of these untruthful and inconsistent statements, we have witnessed how some men were robbed of their youth and freedom for a long period of time only to be freed later on account that the reason for their incarceration was based on a ‘polluted source,’” he said in Senate Bill 253.
Sa halip na ang akusado, ang nagsisinungaling na testigo laban sa kanya ang babalikat sa mga parusa sa kaso o mga kasong kinakaharap ng una oras na maisabatas ang panukalang inihain ni Senador Panfilo Lacson sa Mataas na Kapulungan ng Kongreso.
Sa Senate Bill 253 kasi na inihain ni Lacson at naglalayong amyendahan ang ilang mahahalagang nilalaman ng Revised Penal Code, ipinunto ni Lacson na dapat na ipaako sa testigo ang kaso ng idinidiin nito sa isang kaso o asunto oras na mapatunayang nagsisinungaling lamang ito o gumagawa ng kuwento.
“Any person who shall give false testimony in any criminal case shall suffer the same penalty for the crime the defendant is being accused of,” banggit niya sa naturang panukala.