Lobregat clarifies story on Martial Law approval Print
Saturday, 27 May 2017 15:44

Congressman Celso Lobregatyesterday clarified the content of a press release (PR) that came from his office on the approval by the majority bloc in Congress of the Martial Law declared by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Lobregat said that it was only the Mindanao bloc and not the entire majority bloc of the House of Representatives that met and gave a statement of support to the declaration of the martial law by President Rodrigo Duterte.However, Lobregat is confident that the majority bloc will not revoke or suspend the declaration.

Lobregat issued this statement after local newspapers published the press release stating that the majority bloc of the house already approved the declaration.

The solon said,in fact, the declaration of martial law does not need congress approval, but congress may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which obligation shall not be set aside by the President.

The specific provision pertaining to martial law in the 1987 constitution is found in Article 7, Section 18 of the Philippine Constitution which states that,“In case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it, he may, for a period not exceeding sixty days, suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law.”

“Within forty-eight hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of 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 a 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 24-hours following such proclamation or suspension, convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call.”

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 writ of habeas corpus shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent, in, or directly connected with, invasion. (Dexter Yap/Congressional Office PR)