PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte will take into consideration Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana’s position not to recommend another extension of martial law in Mindanao, Malacañang said on Monday, November 11.
“That will be considered by the President. The President always says he will defer to the advice or the recommendation of those on the ground,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a press conference.
This after Lorenzana said Monday that he would no longer recommend an extension for the fourth time of the martial rule in Mindanao.
Lorenzana said he would instead seek congressional amendments to the Human Security Act to give law enforcement agencies more teeth.
The Defense chief stressed that revising the law would be a “better arrangement than martial law.”
Mindanao was first placed under military rule on May 23, 2017, after the Maute terror group laid siege to Marawi City in Lanao del Sur province.
Martial law in the war-torn region, which was extended by Congress thrice upon the President’s recommendation, will lapse by end of 2019.
Asked as to when will the President decide on the fate of martial law in Mindanao, Panelo said: Hindi pa naman yata mag-expire. Mag-expire na ba? Matagal pa. (It has yet to expire. Is it going to expire already? There's still time).” (NASE/SunStar Philippines)