These House members want to bring back death penalty

Published August 20, 2022, 10:12 AM

by Ellson Quismorio

House members have made the case for the revival of the death penalty or capital punishment through the filing of several House bills (HB) in the 19th Congress.

(Ye Jinghan/ Unsplash)

“While it can be argued that one’s death will never commensurate his/her crimes,” read HB No.501 filed by Davao City 1st district Rep. Paolo Duterte, Benguet lone district Rep. Eric Yap, and ACT-CIS Party-list Reps Edvic Yap and Jeffrey Soriano, “the fear if death as punishment serves as deterrence hindering potential criminals to commit such crime.”

The particular measure suggests the reimplementation of death penalty in the local penal system via hanging, firing squad, and/or lethal injection.

Based on the proposal, those offenders who will be slapped by death penalty are those found guilty of treason, qualified piracy, qualified bribery, parricide, murder, infanticide, rape, kidnapping at serious illegal detention, robbery with violence, destructive arson, plunder, importation, manufacture, and trading of dangerous drugs, carnapping, and planting of evidence.

“Now more than ever is the time to restore the death penalty in the country because we must not be too complacent with these criminals at the expense of the safety of the whole nation,” the authors of HB No.501 said.

Meanwhile, Surigao del Norte 2nd district Rep. Robert Ace Barbers authored and filed HB No.1543, which sought to repeal Republic Act (RA) No.9346.

Enacted on June 24, 2006, RA No.9346 the Act prohibiting the imposition of death penalty in the Philippines.

“Since the government has the highest interest in preventing heinous crimes it should use the strongest punishment available to deter unlawful acts—the death penalty,” wrote Barbers, who chairs the House Committee on Dangerous Drugs.

For Cagayan de Oro 2nd district Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, foreigners who bring in or sell illegal drugs in the Philippines deserve capital punishment.

“Many foreign nationals are now emboldened to establish their drug factories in the Philippines because once convicted they only suffer life imprisonment,” Rodriguez, chairman of the House Committee on Constitutional Amendments, said in his own pro-death penalty measure, HB No.2459.

““This is a sad, or even unfair situation because when Filipinos are caught drug trafficking abroad they may be imposed death penalty,” he said, alluding to a reality that migrant Filipinos face.

Rodriguez said that, while the laws of other countries cannot be questioned, the Philippines must impose the harshest penalty against foreign drug traffickers.