AS AN officer of the court, I stand squarely behind the 1987 Constitution. In fact, in every compromise agreement I draft, we insert this rider: "This agreement is not contrary to laws, public policy, morals and good customs."
It goes without saying that laws are based on the Constitution as interpreted by our court, especially the Supreme Court.
In our breakfast dialogs with commanders of the 303rd Infantry Brigade, we found it easy to agree with their commanders such as Lt. Gen. Oscar Lactao and Major General Jon Aying. We were on the same table not only during breakfasts, but on our political positions.
I esteemed both military officers and gentlemen. They have integrity and I saw them walk the talk on fulfilling their military oath that will they "uphold and defend the Constitution; that (they) will bear true faith and allegiance to it; obey the laws, legal orders and decrees promulgated by the duly constituted authorities."
Elsewhere, Army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Ray Tiongson reiterated early this year the position of the Armed Forces of the Philippines: "As we have established in the past, the Philippine Army does not condone nor tolerate misdemeanor committed by its personnel."
He added, "The Philippine Army (PA) does not tolerate any illegal acts committed by any of its personnel."
And now a prominent former Marine general said establishing a revolutionary government now "cannot be done under the present system, outside ... the Constitution."
"So anyone ... who establishes a revolutionary government has attacked the Constitution," said Rodolfo Biazon, who was awarded the PMA's Lifetime Achievement Award.
Soldiers should remain apolitical, he said on the sidelines of the event that was attended by hundreds of active and retired military and police officers.
"The soldiers can step in should there be a breach against the Constitution... Anything that will be done to effect changes outside the constitutional process ... they are duty-bound to protect the Constitution," said the retired senator.
Yes, gentlemen, you might have retired from the series and can no longer issue commands. But you still hold the moral high ground in upholding the rule of law that you were willing to sacrifice your lives in its defense.
Salute to you, Sirs.
Published in the SunStar Bacolod newspaper on February 19, 2018.
Latest issues of SunStar Bacolod also available on your mobile phones, laptops, and tablets. Subscribe to our digital editions at epaper.sunstar.com.ph and get a free seven-day trial.