IMAGINED OR NOT, terrorism must be bugging our Congress leaders that the Anti-Terrorism bill of 2020 was passed in record time, thanks also to the urgent certification by President Duterte.
Now dubbed Terror bill by objectors and protesters, the enrolled bill awaits the President’s signature before it finally becomes a law and part of our widening jurisprudence.
Those who have managed to read the bill point out to its chilling effects on our individual freedom, foremost of which is the arrest without warrant and keeping those apprehended in jail for 14 days without charge! This, definitely, is a challenge to one’s freedom of movement. Shades of martial law, they say and rightfully so because Duterte is a clone of the late dictator Marcos.
Organizing a movement or association with an unlawful purpose and recruiting people to join the association are grounds to arrest individuals. Loud protestions against the state in mass assembly may also be one.
House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano was quick to dose water over the brewing protests against the Anti-Terror bill. He implored everyone to read the bill crefully (and in its entirety) before criticizing it.
There are now two terror-related issues in our midst: one is the prevailing deadly COVID 19 and the other -the Anti-Terror bill of 2020.
Some authors of the law say some provisions of Anti-Terror laws of other countries were adopted and factored into our own version. They argue that we are at the last rank of countries with a feasible terror bill that is why world organizations and leaders frown on our adamant stance to pass an anti-terror bill at once.
* * *Now that Central Luzon has been under General Community Quarantine (GCQ)people experience a little relaxed atmosphere not given under MECQ and ECQ.
The threat of the deadly disease known as COVID 19 is ever present and palpable that we cannot afford to be nonchalant and complacent. The danger of this disease is forceful and very decisive and the national authorities should be alert and vigilant, otherwise, we would be sorry for its onsequence. Sus.