Senator Tito Sotto lambasted martial law oppositors.
Sotto wanted them to be sent to Marawi City and have them finish the siege themselves.
“Padala na lang lahat ng kontra sa Marawi. Sila tumapos ng gulo,” the senator texted when asked for a comment about the issue.
During the oral arguments in the Supreme Court, Lagman said initially argued that the “acts of terrorism are not necessarily equivalent to actual rebellion and the consequent requirement of securing public safety.”
“Rebellion has a culpable purpose: removing the Philippines or a part thereof from allegiance to the Republic or preventing the President or the Legislature from exercising their powers and prerogatives,” Albay rep said. “This culpable purpose is utterly absent in the alleged ‘rebellion’ in Marawi City and elsewhere in Mindanao,” he added.
Lagman described the President Duterte’s Duterte’s “factual assertions” to justify martial law “turned out to be inaccurate or hyberbolic.”
However, Justice Mariano del Castillo didn’t seem to be convinced with Lagman’s reasonings.
“The military casualty count as of last Sunday is already 58 soldiers, Congressman,” del Castillo told Lagman. “Dead soldiers of ours. And there are 25,000 evacuees now in Iligan City. So for you the situation is still not that serious for Martial Law to … I mean, Martial Law will only be with us for 60 days, assuming that he won’t lift the proclamation earlier. With all the safeguards, I don’t know why you are so worried.”
Lagman replied, “Your honor, all of these subsequent killings, including civilians and children, we commiserate with the government with respect to the deaths of many soldiers. But these are all circumstances after the fact of the declaration of Martial Law. They are the aftermath of an ill-conceived declaration, your honor. So this will not in any way validate the continuance of Martial Law. And we personally believe that the Armed Forces of the Philippines has the capability to suppress this terrorism in Marawi City without the President imposing Martial Law.”
The Congress had already ruled out having a joint session for the ongoing fights against the ISIS-linked Maute group in Marawi and Congress will only summon in joint session if there’s a plan to revoke or extend the 60-day long martial proclamation.
Sotto also stated that the petitioners doesn’t even have solid arguments against the martial law proclamation.
“It’s the same, because the terrorists are aided by the rebels and are rebelling against the government. It’s like saying that suicide does not equate to death! Wala lang masabi!” he said. “They ( referring to Maute) are using terrorism to foster rebellion. It’s as simple as that!” he added.
Senator Tito Sotto was one of the authors of the resolution supporting martial law declaration in Mindanao. He said Lagman’s group were only questioning Duterte’s decision because they are “anti-Duterte”.
Meanwhile, Senator JV Ejercito also dismissed the argument given by Lagman’s group that terrorism doesn’t equate to rebellion.
“Hindi ko alam kung ano pa ang pwedeng itawag doon kasi halos tinake-over na ng Maute group yung Marawi,” he stated. “We are not dealing with ordinary criminals here. These are rebels. they are funded, and internationally-connected,” the senator added.