DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Kabataan party-list has expressed alarm and grave concern over President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement that he would “make radical changes in the days to come.”
Kabataan Rep. Sarah Elago lambasted how Duterte, amid his promise of change, “proves to be no different from his predecessors, and has turned out worse.”
She said even without a formal declaration of martial law, Duterte had “already accomplished brazen changes to establish his reign of terror, tyranny and fascism.”
At a briefing on Tuesday night upon arrival from a three-day official trip from Seoul, South Korea, the President said he might declare a state of national emergency to solve the rampant criminality in the country.
He also warned there would be “radical changes” in the country’s public order and security in the coming days.
But Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque dispelled any ongoing discussions to declare a nationwide martial law.
“No, martial law is [in] Mindanao,” Roque said on Thursday.
“If at all, ‘yun nga po ika-clarify ko, ‘yung state of national emergency kung ito ay na-suspinde na at kinakailangan pang mag deklara for the whole Philippines,” he added.
Kabataan scoffed at this saying, “(T)he people has started to resist the change that has come— from thousands of victims of murderous ‘tokhang’, lives lost and communities destroyed in Marawi, countless crackdowns against dissenters, killings of peasants, to normalizing macho-fascism, skyrocketing price hikes, sellout of natural resources, and consolidation of powers.”
As darker days loom, the militant lawmaker also warned the Duterte administration to expect that radical dissent and struggle against tyranny and dictatorship would rise and reach new heights.
“We’ve had enough and we never forget. The Filipino people is witness to history that the first step to put things in order is for a fascist dictator to step down,” Elago stressed.
Duterte, in September 2016 signed a proclamation which already placed the Philippines under a state of emergency on account of lawless violence.
Roque said he would clarify with the President if a new proclamation would be made in light of his recent statement. (davaotoday.com)