Pacete: Prelude to Martial Law | SunStar

Pacete: Prelude to Martial Law

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Pacete: Prelude to Martial Law

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

WE DO not dream that our country will experience another Martial Law. The real victims of Martial Law do not even want to think of it. Martial Law is the law administered by military forces that is invoked by a government in an emergency when the civilian law enforcement agencies are unable to maintain public order and safety.

Dictator Ferdinand E. Marcos made us taste Martial Law. It was a living hell for the victims. It was paradise for his cronies (relatives and friends appointed to positions of power). The first step to the declaration of Martial Law is the suspension of the “writ of habeas corpus.” The “writ of habeas corpus” is an order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction directed to the person detaining another.

That person is commanded to produce the body of the prisoner at a designated time and place, and to show sufficient cause for holding in custody the individual so detained. The “writ” is the order from the court requiring a person detaining another to show cause for the detention. If Juan de la Cruz is my enemy, I cannot keep him. The court will intervene.

The “privilege of the writ” is the further order from the court to release an individual if it finds his detention without legal cause or authority. Juan de la Cruz is not my piece of furniture. I cannot keep him in my room. His family, through the court, can demand for his release.

The “privilege of the writ of habeas corpus” may be suspended by President Digong in case only of invasion or rebellion, when public safety requires it. The person under detention by the government may not obtain his liberty by its use. The suspension of the “writ of habeas corpus” may call for a little drama for its justification.

Is our country in danger of invasion? Are we being invaded? Some script writers may say, “Yes, the Chinese are already in our small islands and rocks. China has made the Fiery Cross a military garrison hosting 200 Chinese soldiers (or more). It can also host fighter jets and surveillance aircraft. There is the 10,000-foot-long runway. China, at any time, can impose restrictions on freedom of overflight in the area.

Clearly, this is invasion.

Is there a rebellion brewing in the country? Rebellion is an organized attempt to overthrow a lawful government by force of arms. The New People’s Army has been always here armed to the teeth and it is always espousing an idea that our government is not fair. The political leaders are just waiting for the twist of fate and the opportunity. They want to have the rule of the proletariats (the working class).

The Bangsamoro of Mindanao wants an independent Mindanao. The Bangsamoro people believe that they have a legitimate political goal to pursue the right of the Moro Nation to determine their future and political status.

President Digong is hoping that there could be a negotiated political settlement of the Mindanao conflict and the Bangsamoro problem.

Rebellion commonly indicates open armed resistance to the existing government with the aim to overthrow it and set up another government.

In Mindanao, there is a group of terrorists and kidnap for ransom gangs that openly defy our authority. They have powerful arms (and alleged to have financial support from other countries) and control some areas. These war freaks openly engage in a firefight with our Armed Forces of the Philippines.

President Digong also worries about bomb explosion (in his favorite Davao), bomb threat, bomb discovery (near the US Embassy), the gathering of anti-Marcos burial groups (getting bigger), the involvement of politicians and generals in narco politics, the interest of UN and US in extra-judicial killings in our country, the vigilante chase of Senator Leila de Lima, and many more. President Digong is even called by some leftists as the “Puppy of Marcos Family.”

We do not pray for the suspension of the “writ of habeas corpus,” but all of these could possibly end in this direction. Where the “suspension of the writ of habeas corpus” stays, Martial Law cannot be far behind. God bless our grandchildren!

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on December 06, 2016.

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