SC urged to protect public from arbitrary declaration of martial law
Anti-martial law petitioners urged the Supreme Court on Monday to stand its ground and safeguard the public’s fundamental liberties against “whimsical or arbitrary imposition of martial law.”
“In this difficult task of resolving the present dispute and balancing the conflicting interests, we implore the Court to safeguard the people’s fundamental liberties, and ensure that the government’s vast powers are utilized only for the benefit of the people for which it serves,” the 66-page memorandum filed by four Marawi City residents through counsel Marlon J. Manuel reads.
“In deciding this case, the Honorable Court is called upon to rule on the two fundamental doctrines of republic government—the doctrine of separation of powers and the doctrine of checks and balances,” the same memorandum stated.
There are three consolidated petitions asking the high court to nullify Proclamation 216 or President Rodrigo Duterte’s 60-day martial law in the entire Mindanao. All parties — petitioners and respondent, the government through the Office of the Solicitor General — have been required to submit their respective memoranda today (Monday) containing all the arguments they have raised during the oral argument and their response to the matters which the justices required them to clarify.
Petitioners, in their petition as well as during the three-day oral argument, expressed fear that the grave acts and atrocities committed during the martial law of former President Ferdinand Marcos will be repeated during Duterte’s martial law.
“While it is the position of Respondents that our current President’s declaration will be nothing like the Marcos martial law, statements by the Commander-in-Chief, even assuming they are made in jest, contradict this empty assurance.
For it is not true that days after Martial Law has been declared, the President unwittingly said that soldiers can rape women under martial law,” the petitioners added./Inquirer.net
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