Provincial leaders call on all Bohol residents to continue being vigilant amid the skirmish in Mindanao to brace for spillover.
Gov. Edgar Chatto pointed out the entire Boholano community must work together to block any deterrence to prosperity and growth.
“We must not be daunted from producing more, sharing more, building more, and inviting more people to come to Bohol,” according to the Governor.
He believes that Bohol can sustain peace and order through unity and cooperation among the people in the effort to thwart any terror schemes.
“With the on-going critical challenges in Mindanao, now more than ever, we Boholanos need to double our efforts of vigilance and hard work,” according to Chatto.
The chief executive called on the Boholanos not to let their guard down and everyone must continue to be on the lookout for any suspicious individual in their neighborhood.
“Everyone must be on the lookout for persons possessing unlicensed firearms and illegal drugs, and be quick to report them to the authorities,” according to Gov. Chatto.
The people should be wary about any scheme or strategy that the terrorists might employ, including the lure of ideology.
He added that it is actually all up to the people to do their part in the preservation of peace in Bohol and the beauty of living in a peaceful community.
“We shouldn’t be beguiled by ideologies as a means to justify an end. The people have an important role in being constantly vigilant and hardworking. We should not let our guards down. It’s up to us, Boholanos, to create and preserve the kind of province we want. The government could not do it alone,” Chatto added.
He pointed out that the participation of the community is very important in protecting Bohol from any group who has the intention to disturb the peaceful environment.
“We must work together to fight what threatens the peace and security of our beautiful land and people. We should continue to do our share in the building of our communities,” Chatto said.
DYRD Inyong Alagad survey on Thursday showed that majority of Boholanos favor the extension of the President’s declaration of martial law to Visayas.
All they want is for the government to make sure that the military and police assigned should not abuse their power.
To them, martial law can help in the monitoring of the programs and regulations implemented by President Duterte such as curfew, smoking ban, among others.
The respondents favoring it also believe that it is a way to assure the Filipinos of security against terrorism especially to Bohol that had just gone through an Abu Sayyaf infiltration last month.
Those who disagreed believed that the declaration of martial law might just be an opportunity for Duterte’s authoritarian policy.
They fear that the implementation of martial law will lead to the decline of tourists and investors.
They believe that though martial law can guarantee safety against any foreign intruder and ideologies, it can also be a way for President Duterte to abuse his power and will further violate some human rights of the citizens.
For his part, Provincial Administrator Mitchell John Boiser cited Article 7, Section 18 of the 1987 Constitution in explaining the President’s executive call to declare a 60-day martial law in cases of invasion or rebellion when public safety requires.
Boiser explained that if invasion or rebellion “are also prevalent or happening in Visayas and even in Luzon, the president has the executive call to declare on that- -not only in Mindanao, but on the entire country as well- -for a period not exceeding 60 days”.
Article 7, Section 18 of the 1987 Constitution provides that the President, as the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines “and whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion”.
“In case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it, he may, for a period not exceeding 60 days, suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law,” Article 7, Section 18 of the 1987 Constitution states.
The provision also requires that “within 48 hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress”.
“The Congress, voting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session, may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not be set aside by the President. Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress may, in the same manner, extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress, if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it. The Congress, if not in session, shall, within twenty-four hours following such proclamation or suspension, convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call.
The Supreme Court may review, in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen, the sufficiency of the factual basis of the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or the extension thereof, and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty days from its filing.
A state of martial law does not suspend the operation of the Constitution, nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies, nor authorize the conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where civil courts are able to function, nor automatically suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.
The suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent in, or directly connected with, invasion.
During the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, any person thus arrested or detained shall be judicially charged within three days, otherwise he shall be released.” (with reports from Chaitanya Jaya Dy, HNU Communication Intern)