Bishops divided on idea of martial law

Published April 24, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Leslie Ann Aquino

Lawlessness of some rebels not enough reason to declare martial law, a Catholic prelate said.

( | Manila Bulletin)
Sorsogon Bishop Arturo Bastes
( | Manila Bulletin)

Retired Sorsogon Bishop Arturo Bastes said there is no need to declare martial law as the armed forces are capable of handling the peace and order situation. Another archbishop, in Ozamiz City, however supported the idea of martial law.

“Just because some rebels practiced lawlessness is not enough reason to declare Martial Law,” he said in an interview.

“This isolated case can be handled by our armed forces,” added Bastes.

On Friday, President Duterte warned anew that he might declare martial law in the country due to the alleged lawlessness perpetrated by communist rebels.

This was after the rebels allegedly killed two soldiers in Aurora while the latter were escorting the delivery of aid to the people.

The prelate also scored President Duterte who he said has a penchant for declaring martial law for any crisis of lawlessness.

“Martial Law is a solution which is out of proportion to the problem. He delights in dictatorial powers!” said Bastes.

For his part, Ozamiz Archbishop Martin Jumoad sees nothing wrong in declaring martial law if lawlessness prevails.

“Someone must enforce the rule of law. If lawlessness prevails and civilian authority is unable to implement peace and order, the teeth of the law must be enforced thru another means,” he said.

“Sometimes too much freedom destroys the peace and order in the community,” added Jumoad.

He said Filipinos also need to be “disciplined” and one way to do it is thru martial law.

Read more: Martial law an option to end CPP-NPA atrocities — Duterte