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Senators back calls for debate on death penalty

More senators yesterday backed the various calls for an intensive debate on the proposals for the reimposition of the death penalty which the Senate is expected to take up immediately upon the opening of the 17th Congress.

Senate President Franklin Drilon earlier expressed his readiness to engage in debates on the death penalty even though he said he is against the proposal due to a flawed justice system in the country.

But Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said he would not go against the proposals even though he had changed his mind already on the death penalty.

“I will not go against it. Although I have recently reconsidered my stand against it, I must remind you that I was the author and sponsor of the law reimposing the death penalty in the 9th Congress,” Sotto said in a text message to reporters.

Sen. Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara said he is willing to consider both sides of the coin and include proposals seeking to increase the penalties for crimes committed.

“I’m willing to study these proposals. Increasing the penalties for crimes will deter future commission of crimes if there is certainty of arrest and prosecution,” Angara said.

Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III said it is “theoretically” possible for Congress to pass a law that would reimpose the death penalty within three months especially on high level crimes and those convicted being involved in illegal drugs. (HANNAH TORREGOZA)