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Duterte declaration backed

Lawmakers are one with President Duterte’s declaration of a state of lawlessness to intensify his administration’s campaign against terrorism and illegal drugs.

House Deputy Speaker and Capiz Rep. Fredenil Castro and Anak Mindanao party-list Rep. Makmod Mending Jr., both lawyers, said with the President’s declaration, fast and expeditious resolution of issues hounding the country’s security landscape is expected.

“With that, all information and developments, before and after, will be at the fingertips of the President, who, in consequence, shall assume full responsibility over the result. On another front, it will insure fast and expeditious resolutions of all issues or problems,” Castro said in a text message.

Mending said making such declaration is “within the power of the President” and “gives notice to all of our law enforcement agencies to be on heightened alert.”

“This also gives assurance to our people that the President is in control and on top of the situation. Emphasis should be made that no constitutional right is being suspended nor curtailed by this declaration,” he said.

Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco, an independent solon, also agreed with his colleagues, stressing that “immediate decisive action is necessary.”

“Terrorism must be stopped at all cost,” he said.

Iloilo Rep. Jerry Trenas and Misamis Occidental Rep. Jorge Almonte, also lawyers, called for public support on President’s declaration.

“The President with all the intelligence communities under him has all the information and reports on the actual situation. His assessment of the situation is based on these broad knowledge. Let us support the President as he is acting to cope with the situation,” Trenas said.

“President Duterte is acting in consonance with the Constitution (Section 18, Article 7) in declaring in ‘state of lawlessness’ therefore we should strongly support him,” Almonte said.

The 14-man Eastern Visayas bloc of the House of Representatives, led by Eastern Samar Rep. Ben Evardone, extended its deepest sympathies for the bereaved families of the casualties of the explosion in Davao City.

“We share agony of the Filipino nation in the wake of this tragedy. We condemn in strongest terms this evil act and those responsible for their cowardly attack against innocent civilians,” Evardone said. (Charissa M. Luci)