President Duterte has emphasized that he is “not a fan of martial law” but said it could be a “contingency” to address widespread violence.
“I am not a fan of martial law. Abugado ako e. Natakot ‘yung mga tao sa martial law but if ever, martial law is a contingency to meet widespread violence,” the Chief Executive said a few days after he threatened to suspend the Writ of Habeas Corpus if the threat of illegal drugs and terrorism escalates in the country.
This has raised fears among critics of the present administration that the President’s pronouncement could be a prelude to martial law.
The Writ of Habeas Corpus compels the State to produce a person in its custody and justify its detention, effectively nullifying all forms of arrests without warrant.
The Constitution states that the President can suspend the privilege of Writ of Habeas Corpus for 60 days “in case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it.”
The President had said there were instances that he was tempted to declare martial law due to the drug problem in the country. But Duterte said he was told it was “not feasible.” (Elena L. Aben)