Lawmakers vow to revive death penalty

Published July 18, 2019, 4:55 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Charissa Luci-Atienza

Following the gruesome murder and rape of a one-year-old boy, lawmakers vowed Thursday to revive the death penalty in the country.


Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers and Oriental Mindoro Rep. Doy Leachon said they will breathe life into proposals seeking to reinstate capital punishment.

“I will push for the revival of the death penalty,” Barbers, the former chairman of the House Committee on Dangerous Drugs in the 17th Congress, said in an interview, citing that he already refiled his ‘death penalty’ measure.

He said the death of a one-year-old baby in Makati should prod the Lower Chamber to pass a measure seeking to impose death penalty against those who commit heinous crimes, including those that are drug-related.

Barbers filed House Bill 2026 seeking to reimpose death penalty on certain heinous crimes.

“Crimes disturb the order of society. The alarming rise of heinous crime in our country calls for the re-imposition of the capital punishment. The death penalty is said to be the strongest deterrent society has against such crimes. It aims to restore order and adequately punishes criminals. The death penalty also serves as retribution for victims and their families,” he said in filing the bill.

Under House Bill 2026, Barbers seeks to repeal Republic Act 9346, otherwise known as “An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines.”

In a separate interview, Leachon agreed with Barbers that the death penalty must be revived to deter crimes.

“This [the murder and rape of a one-year-old boy] is one of the few and peculiar reasons why such penalty must be revived,” he said.

The former chairman of the House Committee on Justice said he would also file a bill seeking to reimpose capital punishment.

“Possibly, yes, [I will file a bill reimposing death penalty], for sure if  I’ll be chairing [the House Committee on] Justice,” Leachon said.

Gerald Reparip, 28, a construction worker, had admitted to raping and killing a one-year-old baby, who was found dead at the 34th floor of an abandoned building in Makati City early Wednesday morning.
Reparip, who also admitted punching and strangling the victim, has asked forgiveness from the boy’s family, saying that he did not mean to kill the boy.

Read more: Boy found dead after allegedly being raped by uncle’s friend in Makati