Rights groups were invited to work on anti-terror bill, but never showed up! - Lacson

Rights groups were invited to work on anti-terror bill, but never showed up! - Lacson




The disinformation as against the Anti-Terrorism Bill is on a different gear as it has already been ain staple for these past days in the different social media platforms.
One of the principal author Sen. Panfilo "Ping" Lacson said the disinformation has created this sense of fear to the public at large when it has been enacted to replace a 2017 that has been considered archaic already.

A deluge of criticisms is flooding the different social media platforms against the House Bill No. 6875, or the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, which was primarily enacted to amend the country's current but "ineffectual" Human Security Act of 2007, Lacson said in an exclusive interview with ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.
Sen. Panfilo "Ping" Lacson
(photo credit to owner)

The senator said the Commission of Human Rights and other academic and legal experts, were invited in the deliberations of the bill but all of them did not show up.
"Imbita kami nang imbita sa kanila, iniindiyan naman kami, dinedma ang aming invitation. So ngayon na ipinasa na sa House, saka naman sila ingay nang ingay at katakot-takot na disinformation," he said.
(We have been inviting them, but they were declining our invitation. Now that it has been passed in the House, they are making noise and spreading disinformation.)

He explains that since the enactment of the Human Security Act only one out of hundreds of suspects has been convicted of terrorism because of the law's provision fining law enforcers P500,000 in damages per day for detention of any person acquitted of terrorism charges.


"Noong 2018 nangyari 'yung conviction. So after 11 years ng pagpasa nito (Human Security Act), iisa pa lang 'yung conviction. At iisa pa lamang ang terrorist organization na napo-proscribe, 'yung Abu Sayyaf Group. Ito'y nangyari naman nu'ng 2015," said Lacson, chairman of the Senate Committee on National Defense.
(The conviction was in 2018. So after 11 years of implementation, we've only had one conviction. And only one terrorist organization has been proscribed, the Abu Sayyaf Group. This was in 2015.)
Lacson also took note of the 66 Abu Sayyaf members detained by security forces were not charged for violating the country's anti-terrorism law but for kidnapping.

"Ang epekto kasi, kapag sila'y nakulong sa pangkaraniwang crime tulad ng murder [at] kidnapping, at hindi sa terrorism o violation ng anti-terror law, nawawala 'yung pagkakataon ng pamahalaan na magsagawa ng programa ng de-radicalization," he said.
(What happens is, if terrorists are imprisoned for murder or kidnapping and not for breaking the anti-terror law, the government can't make them go through the de-radicalization program.)
Because the very low convictions as regards against the terrorism officials from allied countries such as Australia and the United States of America and even the United Nations Security Council called for tough measures against terrorists in the Philippines.

"Ito'y naging challenge sa'kin bilang head ng defense and security committee ng Senado," said Lacson, who had sponsored the Senate's approved version of the Anti-Terrorism Act.
(This was a challenge for me as head of the defense and security committee of the Senate.)



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Report from ABS-CBN News



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