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PHNO PRESIDENTIAL (DU30) NEWS THIS PAST WEEK
(Mini Reads followed by Full Reports below)

SECURITY CONCERNS PREVENTED RODY FROM RUSHING TO BLAST SITE


SEPTEMBER 4 -President Duterte inspects the Roxas market in Davao City where an explosion occurred Friday night.
No matter how much President Duterte wanted to rush to the Roxas night market that was rocked by an explosion late Friday night, the Presidential Security Group (PSG) prevented him from doing so for security reasons. Duterte was prevailed upon to remain at the Davao City Police Office headquarters in Camp Leonor. He was only allowed to go to the blast site at 4:30 a.m. yesterday, six hours after the explosion. The PSG also allowed the President to go around the hospitals later in the morning yesterday to check on the more than 70 people injured in the explosion. He promised to provide assistance to the victims. A few hours after the blast, the Abu Sayyaf claimed responsibility for the explosion. Many believe that the explosion in Duterte’s home province Davao was aimed at sending him a message. The Abu Sayyaf earlier warned of possible attacks in retaliation for the President’s declaration of an all-out war against the bandit group. With the assassination threat to Duterte and recent bombing in Davao City, the PSG further tightened the security matrix for the President and his family, especially after he launched a war on drugs targeting drug lords and even government and police officials.

ALSO Bloody Friday in Davao: WITH 14 DEAD, DUTERTE DECLARES STATE OF LAWLESSNESS


SEPTEMBER 4 -Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte is interviewed by reporters after visiting the explosion site at a market YAHOO FILE PHOTO - DAVAO CITY—President Duterte declared a nationwide “state of lawless violence” on Saturday hours after suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits detonated a bomb at a night market in his hometown, killing 14 people and wounding 68 others. Mr. Duterte, who called the attack an act of “terrorism,” said his declaration did not amount to an imposition of martial law. He said the declaration would allow the deployment of troops in urban centers to back up the police in setting up checkpoints and increasing patrols. “I’m declaring now a state of lawlessness. It is not martial law. It has nothing to do with the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus,” Mr. Duterte told reporters before dawn, after inspecting the site of the explosion at the night market on Roxas Avenue here. The site near the Jesuit-run Ateneo de Davao University and a five-star hotel was littered with debris from the explosion and the ground splattered with the blood of 10 people who were killed outright when the bomb went off after 10 p.m. on Friday. Mr. Duterte said the state of lawlessness would remain until he decided all citizens were safe. “I have a duty to protect this country and to keep the integrity of the nation intact,” the President said. Military, police to run PH “I am inviting now the armed forces, the military and the police, to run the country in accordance with my specifications,” he said. Mr. Duterte said there would be “many checkpoints,” but curfew would not be imposed. “Any punitive or any action at all taken by the security forces will be in furtherance to stop terrorism,” he said. “And I am including drugs because of so many killings unfairly attributed to the police,” he added. There was confusion earlier on Saturday about the scope of Mr. Duterte’s declaration—whether it was limited to Davao City or covered the whole country. Malacañang officials at first said it covered only Davao, but later said the declaration covered the entire country. Authorities were investigating the possible involvement of the Abu Sayyaf bandit group in the explosion. READ MORE...WATCH DUTERTE ON VIDEOS...

ALSO: What is state of lawless violence?


SEPTEMBER 4 -GOOGLES PHOTO -
LAW EXPERTS on Saturday said the people’s rights should not be affected by President Duterte’s declaration of a “state of lawlessness,” as it is limited to calling out the military to help the police suppress violence. Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II stressed the constitutionality of the declaration, which came hours after an explosion killed 14 people and wounded 68 others at a night market in Mr. Duterte’s hometown, Davao City. Mr. Duterte’s authority under the declaration is limited to summoning armed forces to suppress violence “through ordinary police action,” according to Integrated Bar of the Philippines president Rosario Setias-Reyes. Aguirre said the declaration did not amount to an imposition of martial law. Instead, it was a “precautionary measure” that had factual basis in the explosion. “As Commander in Chief, [he is mandated] to protect the people. The [Armed Forces of the Philippines] is constitutionally mandated to protect the people from lawlessness,” Aguirre said in a text message. Rule of law Asked about its effect on people’s rights, Public Attorney’s Office chief Persida Rueda-Acosta said “legal and substantive rights are protected because this [is] part of the rule of law.” Acosta said the President had the power to “call out” the armed forces to maintain the rule of law and prevent any lawless violence under Article VII, Section 18, of the 1987 Constitution. She also stressed that police power is one of the inherent powers of the state, alongside eminent domain and taxation. “The only aim of the declaration is to suppress and prevent lawlessness and violence,” Acosta said. Reyes, in a text message to the Inquirer, cited two Supreme Court decisions that defined the limits of the President’s power under Article VII, Section 18, of the Constitution. She said that under the President’s exercise of the “calling-out” power, “the authority of the President appears to be limited only to the summoning of the armed forces to assist in the suppression of lawless violence, invasion or rebellion through ordinary police action.” “Any act beyond it shall be considered illegal,” Reyes said. READ MORE...

ALSO: Rody visits victims in hospitals - 'My sight turned blurry; I felt pain in my face’


SEPTEMBER 4 -
AVAO CITY—It started as any other ordinary night at the Roxas market, until an explosion rocked the area past 10 p.m. on Friday. Among those who died in the blast that killed 14 people and wounded 68 others, according to official figures as of Saturday morning, was a 12-year-old boy and an unidentified woman presumed to be his mother. Worst hit in the explosion were women, including masseuses, food vendors and customers.
Jeramil Bansil, 33, was massaging a customer when he heard the explosion and felt something hit him. He suddenly found everything had become blurred. “My sight turned blurry and I felt the pain on my face,” said Bansil, one of 34 wounded from the blast and treated at the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) here. He recalled the screams and the chaos as people scampered in all directions, and saw the bodies sprawled on the ground. “I no longer knew where my customer went, many people fell, and there was shouting all around me,” Bansil said, while hospital nurses attended to his wounds, most of them concentrated on his face. Just 12 meters away, Joan Marie Salugsugan, 20, a third year criminology student at the University of Mindanao, was also being treated for wounds. She was out eating barbecue with friends, when they heard a loud blast. She looked around, saw the commotion and found her friends sprawled on the ground. It was then when she realized that her left foot was hit too. READ MORE... WATCH VIDEO...

ALSO DILG chief: We have to be careful in Metro Manila, big cities


SEPTEMBER 4 -Interior Secretary Ismael "Mike" Sueno on Sunday warned people in Metro Manila and other big cities to "be careful" following the night market blast in Davao City that left 14 people dead and dozens wounded. "We have to be careful sa Metro Manila, maski saan, maski sa buong Pilipinas, basta sa mga big cities, talagang mag-ingat tayo," Sueno said in an interview with GMA News' Susan Enriquez. Sueno was in Davao City after President Rodrigo Duterte called for a Cabinet meeting on Saturday night, a day after the deadly blast in his home city. "Sa Metro Manila mayroon na kaming intel reports at saka active na iyong mga intelligence natin," the secretary said without elaborating. The interior chief, meanwhile, said that people should not panic and should just avoid public places. He also asked the public to immediately inform the authorities if they notice suspicious-looking people and baggage. Sueno's warning came after Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said that the perpetrators of the night market bomb attack may also hit other major cities. "They are able to do it here in Davao, why not in other cities?" Dela Rosa said at a press conference on Saturday, referring to the bomb attack in Davao City. Earlier in the day, Dela Rosa also said that the PNP is making sure that all cities nationwide are prepared for similar attacks. Downgraded alert Meanwhile, military spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo said that the Armed Forces of the Philippines has downgraded its alert level in Metro Manila from red to blue. READ MORE...

ALSO: Vigilance on lawless state urged


SEPTEMBER 5 -SENATOR DE LIMA WHILE deferring to President Duterte in placing the country under a “state of lawless violence,” Sen. Leila de Lima on Sunday called for public vigilance to protect civil rights with the military poised to join the police in law enforcement in the wake of the deadly bomb attack in Davao City on Friday night. “While it is for the President to decide what powers are needed to respond to the current situation, it is also for the people to be vigilant that the government response to the crisis does not result in the restriction of their civil liberties and political rights,” said De Lima, who has been accused by Mr. Duterte of protecting drug lords when she was justice secretary under former President Benigno Aquino III. Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman said Mr. Duterte’s move in the wake of the bombing that left 14 people dead and scores wounded was “alarming” yet “legally unnecessary” since the President could call out the military even without such declaration. “What has been happening unabated and with impunity are the extrajudicial killings perpetrated by police authorities and their civilian cohorts,” Lagman said. “State violence begets violence by nonstate actors.” Hours after the bombing, Mr. Duterte announced he was declaring a “state of lawless violence” in the country to combat the drug menace, runway criminality and the Abu Sayyaf banditry. Not martial law The President said this did not mean he was imposing martial law and stressed that the writ of habeas corpus remained and that there would be no curfew. He explained that the declaration would simply allow the military to join the Philippine National Police in securing the nation “in accordance with my specifications.” Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, speaking on state-run Radyo ng Bayan, on Sunday acknowledged concerns over the President’s declaration and said Malacañang had completed drafting the proclamation, which would be released soon. READ MORE...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

Security concerns prevent Rody from rushing to blast site


President Duterte inspects the Roxas market in Davao City where an explosion occurred Friday night.

DAVAO CITY, SEPTEMBER 5, 2016 (PHILSTAR)  By Edith Regalado  September 4, 2016 - 12:00am - No matter how much President Duterte wanted to rush to the Roxas night market that was rocked by an explosion late Friday night, the Presidential Security Group (PSG) prevented him from doing so for security reasons.

Duterte was prevailed upon to remain at the Davao City Police Office headquarters in Camp Leonor. He was only allowed to go to the blast site at 4:30 a.m. yesterday, six hours after the explosion.

The PSG also allowed the President to go around the hospitals later in the morning yesterday to check on the more than 70 people injured in the explosion. He promised to provide assistance to the victims.

A few hours after the blast, the Abu Sayyaf claimed responsibility for the explosion.

Many believe that the explosion in Duterte’s home province Davao was aimed at sending him a message. The Abu Sayyaf earlier warned of possible attacks in retaliation for the President’s declaration of an all-out war against the bandit group.

With the assassination threat to Duterte and recent bombing in Davao City, the PSG further tightened the security matrix for the President and his family, especially after he launched a war on drugs targeting drug lords and even government and police officials.

READ MORE...

“I requested that security of our children be intensified,” said Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, the President’s son.

Paolo also said that although security threat has been part of the lives of the Duterte family, they have always been on their toes.

With the assassination threat and the Davao blast, Communications Secretary Martin Andanar called on Filipinos to help protect the life of the President by being vigilant and help in gathering information at the community level, similar to what a neighborhood watch group usually does.

When asked to comment on the request of Paolo for additional security men, the President said it was normal “because he has many children.” – With Giovanni Nilles


INQUIRER

Bloody Friday in Davao: WITH 14 DEAD, DUTERTE DECLARES STATE OF LAWLESSNESS SHARES: 27 VIEW COMMENTS By: Leila B. Salaverria @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer 12:00 AM September 4th, 2016


Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte is interviewed by reporters after visiting the explosion site at a market YAHOO FILE PHOTO -

DAVAO CITY—President Duterte declared a nationwide “state of lawless violence” on Saturday hours after suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits detonated a bomb at a night market in his hometown, killing 14 people and wounding 68 others.

Mr. Duterte, who called the attack an act of “terrorism,” said his declaration did not amount to an imposition of martial law.

He said the declaration would allow the deployment of troops in urban centers to back up the police in setting up checkpoints and increasing patrols.

“I’m declaring now a state of lawlessness. It is not martial law. It has nothing to do with the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus,” Mr. Duterte told reporters before dawn, after inspecting the site of the explosion at the night market on Roxas Avenue here.

 
https://youtu.be/g79OoCIz77I
DUTERTE VISITS BOMBING SITE

The site near the Jesuit-run Ateneo de Davao University and a five-star hotel was littered with debris from the explosion and the ground splattered with the blood of 10 people who were killed outright when the bomb went off after 10 p.m. on Friday.

Mr. Duterte said the state of lawlessness would remain until he decided all citizens were safe.

“I have a duty to protect this country and to keep the integrity of the nation intact,” the President said.

Military, police to run PH

“I am inviting now the armed forces, the military and the police, to run the country in accordance with my specifications,” he said.

Mr. Duterte said there would be “many checkpoints,” but curfew would not be imposed.

“Any punitive or any action at all taken by the security forces will be in furtherance to stop terrorism,” he said.

“And I am including drugs because of so many killings unfairly attributed to the police,” he added.

There was confusion earlier on Saturday about the scope of Mr. Duterte’s declaration—whether it was limited to Davao City or covered the whole country.

Malacañang officials at first said it covered only Davao, but later said the declaration covered the entire country.

Authorities were investigating the possible involvement of the Abu Sayyaf bandit group in the explosion.

READ MORE...

Mr. Duterte last month ordered the military to destroy the Abu Sayyaf after the bandits beheaded an 18-year-old male captive whose family failed to pay them P1 million in ransom.

Nearly 9,000 troops are battling the Abu Sayyaf on Jolo Island, Sulu province, and 15 soldiers and about 30 bandits have been killed in clashes since fighting intensified late last month.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the Abu Sayyaf had struck back after suffering heavy losses.

“We have predicted this and warned our troops accordingly, but the enemy is also adept at using the democratic space granted by our Constitution to move around freely and unimpeded to sow terror,” Lorenzana said in a statement.

Earlier on Saturday, the Abu Sayyaf, through spokesperson Muammar Askali, alias Abu Ramie, claimed responsibility for the explosion.

 
https://youtu.be/dpP49ONnIsg
DUTERTE VISITS MORGUE TO SEE VICTIMS OF DAVAO BLASTS

Abus disown blast

Later, however, Askali denied Al Harakatul Al Islamiya, the Abu Sayyaf’s official name, was behind the attack.

In a phone call to the Inquirer, Askali said the Abu Sayyaf’s ally Daulat Ul Islamiya carried out the bombing.

“They are doing this to sympathize [with] our group and we are sending a message to President Rodrigo Duterte that all the Daulat throughout the country is not afraid of him,” Askali said.

Askali is the son-in-law of Mohammad Said, an influential Abu Sayyaf commander who used the nom de guerre Amah Maas and who was killed in the military’s offensive in Sulu.

He said Friday night’s explosion was only the start of attacks that would continue as long as the military kept up pressure on the Abu Sayyaf in Sulu.

Askali said the attacks would stop only if Mr. Duterte made “hadith” his laws and converted to Islam.

The hadith is a collection of the sayings of Prophet Muhammad, with accounts of his daily practices.

Sunni Muslims use the hadith to emulate the Prophet.

There was no comment from Mr. Duterte, who told reporters at site of the blast that investigators were also looking at other possible suspects, including drug syndicates, which he has targeted in a brutal crackdown.

“These are extraordinary times and I suppose that I’m authorized to allow the security forces of this country to do searches,” the President said, asking the public to cooperate and be vigilant.

“We’re trying to cope with a crisis now. There is a crisis in this country involving drugs, extrajudicial killings and there seems to be an environment of lawless violence,” he said.

 
https://youtu.be/OAA4GRO4omo
DUTERTE DECLARES 'STATE OF LAWLESSNESS

‘Disgruntled vendors’

Chief Supt. Manuel Gaerlan, the Southern Mindanao police director who is leading the investigation of the blast, said police were also looking at the possible involvement of “disgruntled vendors” in the explosion.

“There were some disgruntled vendors in the awarding of stalls at the night market. This is one of the [angles] we are looking [at],” Gaerlan said.

He said any group could claim responsibility for the attack. “That is normal,” he said. “They can use it to boost their popularity, but as I said, we are still investigating.”

Gaerlan said investigators had not yet confirmed that the explosion was caused by a bomb.

“We are still collecting evidence,” he said.

President Duterte’s communications secretary, Martin Andanar, said the explosive device appeared to have been made from a mortar round, and doctors reported many of the victims had shrapnel wounds.

But Chief Insp. Andrea de la Cerna, spokesperson for the Southern Mindanao Police, said that although shrapnel had been found on the dead and wounded, it remained unclear whether what had gone off at the site was an explosive device.

Davao on lockdown

Gaerlan said police were reviewing video from security cameras of several establishments on Roxas Avenue.

He declined to comment on reports that at least two suspects had been taken into police custody.

Mr. Duterte said he had put Davao City under lockdown.

The Philippine National Police explained that the lockdown would enable security forces to restrict the movements of the perpetrators.

PNP Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa also placed all police units across the country on full alert to prevent the perpetrators from carrying out attacks in other parts of the country.

“We will not be cowed by this single act of terrorism. These people don’t deserve an inch of space in a civilized society,” Dela Rosa said.

In Cagayan de Oro City, Chief Supt. Noel Constantino, Northern Mindanao police chief, put all police units on full alert and called on the public to watch out for suspicious persons and packages.

Mr. Duterte said Davao City remained safe.

“Of course, Davao is safe,” said the President, a former mayor of Davao who takes pride in keeping peace and order in the city by ruling it with an iron fist.

The city is now governed by his children. Daughter Sara is mayor and son Paolo is vice mayor.

Safe place

On Friday, Mr. Duterte told reporters that his city was a safe place.

He said he would resign if anyone were mugged or robbed in the city.

On Saturday, he said the blast could not be blamed on failure of intelligence, as there had been warnings about a possible attack in Davao because of the military’s offensive against the Abu Sayyaf in Sulu.


BLAST SITE President Duterte visits the night market on Roxas Avenue in Davao City where 14 people were killed and 68 others injured after an explosion tore through what Davaoeños call their happy place. Malacañang photo

Security and intelligence officials had been in the city, he noted.

The Department of Justice formed a group to investigate the attack.

The panel is composed of justice officials, National Bureau of Investigation agents, and prosecutors, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II said.

Mr. Duterte rejected the idea of involving foreign experts in investigating the blast.

“I do not want any foreign investigators in the city. The police in the Republic of the Philippines and the military, the armed forces of the country, are capable of doing the investigation,” he said.

Mr. Duterte was in Davao City when the explosion occurred. Shortly after the blast, he went to the vicinity to preside over a security meeting with officials.

Past 4 a.m., he strode out of the Marco Polo Hotel and walked toward nearby Roxas Avenue to inspect the blast site.

His visit came about an hour after explosives experts and forensic investigators had finished combing through the scene, where bloodied bags and slippers were left on the ground, not far from an empty, pink baby stroller.

The night market features stalls selling food and offering massage services right on the roadside. There are also rows of used-clothes stalls.

At least three of the victims were wearing the uniform of massage therapists, said Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte.

Hospital visits

Aside from inspecting the blast site, Mr. Duterte also visited the injured at hospitals.

He also went to the morgue where the bodies of the people who perished in the blast had been taken.

A photograph released by Malacañang showed the President condoling with the families of the fatalities.

Later on Saturday, the city honored the dead with a memorial Mass celebrated by Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles.

Mayor Sara Duterte and other city officials, including the city police chief, Senior Supt. Michael John Dubria, attended the Mass.

In his homily, Valles called for calm among the city residents, but rallied them to stand up to terror and other forms of violence.

After the Mass, residents, some carrying placards proclaiming that Davao City would never vow to terror, offered flowers and lit candles at the blast site. With reports from Cynthia D. Balana and Vince F. Nonato in Manila; Allan Nawal, Julie S. Alipala, Judy Quiros and Jigger Jerusalem, Inquirer Mindanao; AP and AFP


INQUIRER

What is state of lawless violence? By: Vince F. Nonato @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer 02:52 AM September 4th, 2016


GOOGLED PHOTO -


LAW EXPERTS on Saturday said the people’s rights should not be affected by President Duterte’s declaration of a “state of lawlessness,” as it is limited to calling out the military to help the police suppress violence.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II stressed the constitutionality of the declaration, which came hours after an explosion killed 14 people and wounded 68 others at a night market in Mr. Duterte’s hometown, Davao City.

Mr. Duterte’s authority under the declaration is limited to summoning armed forces to suppress violence “through ordinary police action,” according to Integrated Bar of the Philippines president Rosario Setias-Reyes.

Aguirre said the declaration did not amount to an imposition of martial law. Instead, it was a “precautionary measure” that had factual basis in the explosion.

“As Commander in Chief, [he is mandated] to protect the people. The [Armed Forces of the Philippines] is constitutionally mandated to protect the people from lawlessness,” Aguirre said in a text message.

Rule of law

Asked about its effect on people’s rights, Public Attorney’s Office chief Persida Rueda-Acosta said “legal and substantive rights are protected because this [is] part of the rule of law.”

Acosta said the President had the power to “call out” the armed forces to maintain the rule of law and prevent any lawless violence under Article VII, Section 18, of the 1987 Constitution.

She also stressed that police power is one of the inherent powers of the state, alongside eminent domain and taxation.

“The only aim of the declaration is to suppress and prevent lawlessness and violence,” Acosta said.

Reyes, in a text message to the Inquirer, cited two Supreme Court decisions that defined the limits of the President’s power under Article VII, Section 18, of the Constitution.

She said that under the President’s exercise of the “calling-out” power, “the authority of the President appears to be limited only to the summoning of the armed forces to assist in the suppression of lawless violence, invasion or rebellion through ordinary police action.”

“Any act beyond it shall be considered illegal,” Reyes said.

READ MORE...

She recalled the 2006 Supreme Court ruling in David v. Arroyo, which found unconstitutional several acts during the “state of national emergency” declared in the aftermath of a supposedly foiled coup attempt.

The ruling hit the warrantless arrests of Prof. Randolf S. David and Ronald Llamas, the dispersal of the rallies and the warrantless arrest of Kilusang Mayo Uno members, the imposition of standards on the press, and the warrantless search of the Daily Tribune offices.

Reyes also noted the 2000 Supreme Court ruling in IBP
v. Zamora, which provided the only criterion for exercising the calling-out power of the President.

The criterion, she said, is “whenever it becomes necessary … to prevent or suppress lawless violence or rebellion.”

“Owing to the vast intelligence network of the Office of the President, [the President] is in the best position to determine the actual condition of the country,” Reyes said.

Ateneo School of Government Dean Antonio La Viña said the declaration provided extraordinary powers to allow Duterte to “wage a most efficacious defense of the nation in times of crisis, without being unduly straitjacketed by structural and bureaucratic restraints.”

‘Most benign’

La Viña explained in a Facebook post that summoning armed forces to combat lawless violence under the declaration is the “most benign” of the powers allowed under Article VII, Section 18.

Martial law is the power that is “most serious and carries the most impact on the social and political life of the nations,” he said.

But La Viña noted that the level of conflict warranting such extraordinary powers tends to “depend on this wide presidential discretion.”

He cited the Supreme Court’s ruling in David v. Arroyo that said “the power is by and large a discretionary power solely vested on the President’s wisdom.”

“For which reason, emergency rule becomes fraught with opportunities for abuse; a gateway to constitutional shortcuts. Once emergency rule is declared, the constitutional bonds are loosened that could create a window of opportunity for unrestricted power,” he said.

La Viña said the 1987 Constitution was designed with a pervading theme to “do away with all possibilities of strongman rule, no doubt a painful lesson of the Marcos dictatorship.”


A Philippine soldier keeps watch at a blast site at a night market that has left several people dead and wounded others in southern Davao city, Philippines late Friday Sept. 2, 2016. The powerful explosion in Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's hometown in the southern Philippines took place amid a security alert due to a major offensive against Abu Sayyaf militants in the region, officials said. (AP Photo/Manman Dejeto)

This design meant the creation of an intricate system of checks and balances that calls for Congress’ participation when the President can invoke more serious powers such as emergency powers, the declaration of a state of war, or the imposition of martial law.

Not legally insignificant

Fr. Ranhilio Aquino, dean of San Beda College Graduate School of Law, said that while the declaration was “nothing alarming … neither is it legally insignificant.”

In a Facebook post, Aquino said it was a signal to the legislature that Mr. Duterte may ask for emergency powers.

Aquino said that while checkpoints have always been allowed in normal circumstances, the declaration means “only that their usefulness becomes more urgent now.”

“Does that allow police officers to search so thoroughly that they can forcibly open gloves and baggage compartment? No, but they can request you to open these and it would be wise for one to cooperate,” he said.

National Union of People’s Lawyers secretary general Edre Olalia said that calling out the military to suppress lawless violence “does not mean the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part [of it] under martial law.”

La Viña said the extraordinary powers of the President could be considered, at best, “a necessary evil.”

But he cautioned that “extraordinary powers should only be invoked as a last resort.”

“It should never be considered normal, must never be lightly granted by Congress, and if the right case or controversy comes, the Supreme Court have to scrutinize this carefully,” he said.

While there exists the “ever-present possibility” of the slippery slope of frequently invoking emergency rule, La Viña said: “For now, [Mr.] Duterte’s declaration does not appear to lead us to that slope, but we must be vigilant.”

This is not the first time a part of the Philippines has been placed under the “state of lawless violence.”

A state of emergency was mostly recently declared on April 2, 2003, by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, after two explosions rocked the old Davao International Airport and the Sasa Wharf, killing 38 people and wounded a hundred others.

But, the 2003 declaration was limited to Davao City, unlike Saturday’s declaration by Mr. Duterte, which covers the entire Philippines.


INQUIRER

Rody visits victims in hospitals: ‘My sight turned blurry; I felt pain in my face’ By: Germelina Lacorte @inquirerdotnet Inquirer Mindanao 12:18 AM September 4th, 2016

 
https://youtu.be/77-66SUBe3o

DAVAO CITY—It started as any other ordinary night at the Roxas market, until an explosion rocked the area past 10 p.m. on Friday.

Among those who died in the blast that killed 14 people and wounded 68 others, according to official figures as of Saturday morning, was a 12-year-old boy and an unidentified woman presumed to be his mother. Worst hit in the explosion were women, including masseuses, food vendors and customers.

Jeramil Bansil, 33, was massaging a customer when he heard the explosion and felt something hit him. He suddenly found everything had become blurred.


PRESIDENT Duterte visits one of the wounded at a hospital. AFP

“My sight turned blurry and I felt the pain on my face,” said Bansil, one of 34 wounded from the blast and treated at the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) here.

He recalled the screams and the chaos as people scampered in all directions, and saw the bodies sprawled on the ground.

“I no longer knew where my customer went, many people fell, and there was shouting all around me,” Bansil said, while hospital nurses attended to his wounds, most of them concentrated on his face.

Just 12 meters away, Joan Marie Salugsugan, 20, a third year criminology student at the University of Mindanao, was also being treated for wounds. She was out eating barbecue with friends, when they heard a loud blast. She looked around, saw the commotion and found her friends sprawled on the ground. It was then when she realized that her left foot was hit too.

READ MORE...

“I stayed there, and did not move, until somebody helped me because I was hit on my left foot,” Salugsugan said in the SPMC ward crowded with other blast survivors.

Massage section

The explosion came mainly from the massage section of the night market, said Wilfredo Masukat Jr., 22, a dim sum vendor hit by a shrapnel about 12 meters from the blast site.

Masukat’s claim was seconded by Chief Supt. Manuel Gaerlan, who added that it would explain why many of those wounded were massage attendants and their customers.

Of the 14 reported to have been killed in the explosion, 10 died instantly, while the rest died in different hospitals in the city.

A list provided by the Southern Mindanao police office showed that three patients died at the SPMC, and another at the San Pedro Hospital.

Among the three reported dead at the SPMC was 12-year-old Larida Daniel, and a still unidentified woman presumed to be his mother. The boy died of multiple lacerations and wounds in his frontal area, right shoulder and right thigh.

The woman, identified only as MS X 88 B, suffered from a cardiopulmonary arrest due to massive blood loss from the number of blast wounds she received. Another unidentified woman died in the operating room.

Dr. Ricardo Auldan, SPMC chief of clinics, said the hospital will shoulder all medical expenses of the blast victims.

“What we can assure you is that we will shoulder all expenses,” he said, adding that as personnel of a government hospital, it is their responsibility to offer their services to the victims.

Of the 34 people admitted at the SPMC, 20 were women.

Memorial


SARA DUTERTE-CARPIO

Mayor Sara Duterte has expressed her deepest sorrow at the tragedy and assured the victims of government’s help, even as she organized a memorial at 4 p.m. Saturday, at the Roxas explosion site.

“We will not be terrorized by this heinous crime,” Mayor Duterte said, “I call on all Davaoeños. Let us remain vigilant. Please report any and all suspicious activity, no matter how insignificant it may seem,” she said.

“I am sorry for what happened,” she told the families of the victims. “I would like to express my deepest condolences to the families of those who died last night. I would also like to reassure all of them, as well as the families of those who are injured, that the city government of Davao will assist in all their needs for hospitalization, burial, funeral and day to day expenses. I am sorry for what happened.”

Duterte also reminded other local officials to “stay within the bounds of their official duties, according to their positions.”

She added: “Please leave me in peace to do my job and I’ll leave you to focus on your own work.”


GMA NEWS NETWORK

DILG chief: We have to be careful in Metro Manila, big cities Published September 4, 2016 8:35pm

Interior Secretary Ismael "Mike" Sueno on Sunday warned people in Metro Manila and other big cities to "be careful" following the night market blast in Davao City that left 14 people dead and dozens wounded.

"We have to be careful sa Metro Manila, maski saan, maski sa buong Pilipinas, basta sa mga big cities, talagang mag-ingat tayo," Sueno said in an interview with GMA News' Susan Enriquez.

Sueno was in Davao City after President Rodrigo Duterte called for a Cabinet meeting on Saturday night, a day after the deadly blast in his home city.

"Sa Metro Manila mayroon na kaming intel reports at saka active na iyong mga intelligence natin," the secretary said without elaborating.

The interior chief, meanwhile, said that people should not panic and should just avoid public places.

He also asked the public to immediately inform the authorities if they notice suspicious-looking people and baggage.

Sueno's warning came after Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said that the perpetrators of the night market bomb attack may also hit other major cities.

"They are able to do it here in Davao, why not in other cities?" Dela Rosa said at a press conference on Saturday, referring to the bomb attack in Davao City.

Earlier in the day, Dela Rosa also said that the PNP is making sure that all cities nationwide are prepared for similar attacks.

Downgraded alert

Meanwhile, military spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo said that the Armed Forces of the Philippines has downgraded its alert level in Metro Manila from red to blue.

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"Alert status in [Metro Manila] is downgraded to blue at this time," he said in a message to members of the media.

Arevalo, however, could not give a reason why the alert in Metro Manila was downgraded.

"I wasn't told about the reason. I just got the message through SMS," he said.

He added: "I surmise this follows from the directive that area commanders may downgrade or upgrade the alert status depending on their assessment on the prevailing situation on the ground."

The military and the police went on full alert nationwide after Duterte declared a state of lawlessness following the Davao City attack.

Central Mindanao bombers moving

In a separate interview, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that he received fresh information from his sources that "known bombers in Central Mindanao area" are moving.

"Ibig sabihin may movement talaga sila," Piñol said.

The agriculture chief, meanwhile, floated the idea that of "bombers-for-hire" being paid by drug syndicates.

"Eh kasi mas maraming pera ang mga drug syndicates kaysa sa Abu Sayyaf eh. Posible rin na mensahe ito ng drug syndicates na ito, sample pa lang 'to (Davao City blast)," he added.

In a separate press conference on Saturday, Dela Rosa also said revealed the possible angle that the Davao City blast was an act of narco-terrosism, a term used for a type of terrorism financed by profits from the illegal drug trade.

Sueno and Piñol, meanwhile, said that the possibility of involvement of drug syndicates and the Abu Sayyaf Group in the Davao City blast was discussed during the Cabinet meeting held at the city's Matina Enclave.

The interior chief that Duterte was not actually surprised with the attack in the city.

He said the President was expecting the hit due to his order for the military to "destroy" the bandit group.

Piñol said that during the meeting, Duterte likened the Abu Sayyaf Group to "germs."

"Itong Abu Sayyaf, these are already germs na hindi na natin mababago. No amount of goodwill, no amount of government projects, no amount of enticement. The time has come for us to really confront this problem," the agriculture chief quoted Duterte as saying during the Cabinet meeting.

He said Duterte's exact order during the meeting was: "Let's crush them." —ALG, GMA News


INQUIRER

Vigilance on lawless state urged By: Inquirer Staff @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer
12:12 AM September 5th, 2016

 
https://youtu.be/OAA4GRO4omo -PRESIDENT DUTERTE EXPLAINS 'STATE OF LAWLESSNESS'
Duterte declares state of lawlessness in PH INQUIRER.net INQUIRER.net Subscribe63,004 Add to Share More 10,575 views 34 4 Published on Sep 3, 2016 President Rodrigo Duterte early Saturday declared “a state of lawlessness” or “a state of lawless violence” to counter terrorism and strengthen the campaign against illegal-drug trade.

WHILE deferring to President Duterte in placing the country under a “state of lawless violence,” Sen. Leila de Lima on Sunday called for public vigilance to protect civil rights with the military poised to join the police in law enforcement in the wake of the deadly bomb attack in Davao City on Friday night.

“While it is for the President to decide what powers are needed to respond to the current situation, it is also for the people to be vigilant that the government response to the crisis does not result in the restriction of their civil liberties and political rights,” said De Lima, who has been accused by Mr. Duterte of protecting drug lords when she was justice secretary under former President Benigno Aquino III.


SENATOR DE LIMA

Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman said Mr. Duterte’s move in the wake of the bombing that left 14 people dead and scores wounded was “alarming” yet “legally unnecessary” since the President could call out the military even without such declaration.

“What has been happening unabated and with impunity are the extrajudicial killings perpetrated by police authorities and their civilian cohorts,” Lagman said. “State violence begets violence by nonstate actors.”

Hours after the bombing, Mr. Duterte announced he was declaring a “state of lawless violence” in the country to combat the drug menace, runway criminality and the Abu Sayyaf banditry.

Not martial law

The President said this did not mean he was imposing martial law and stressed that the writ of habeas corpus remained and that there would be no curfew.

He explained that the declaration would simply allow the military to join the Philippine National Police in securing the nation “in accordance with my specifications.”

Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, speaking on state-run Radyo ng Bayan, on Sunday acknowledged concerns over the President’s declaration and said Malacañang had completed drafting the proclamation, which would be released soon.

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ANDANAR

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines was included to better ensure the security of the country,” Andanar said.

“We have to accept the fact that our government is on serious war against illegal drugs and serious war against terrorism in Sulu in Basilan, and these terrorists will always find a way to retaliate,” Andanar said. “We are facing a faceless enemy, and the best way is to get our act together as government and as one people,” he added.

Earlier, presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said the declaration was based on a constitutional provision, which states: “The President shall be the Commander in Chief of all Armed Forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion.”


Protesters display placards during a prayer vigil in Manila, Philippines, for the victims of Friday night’s explosion in Davao city southern Philippines, Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte declared a nationwide “state of lawlessness” Saturday after suspected Abu Sayyaf extremists detonated a bomb at the night market in Davao city, his hometown, killing a number of people and injuring dozens. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

The AFP spokesperson, Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla, told the Inquirer in a phone interview that the public should expect increased visibility of military and police personnel. There has been no significant troop movements so far, he said, except in Davao.

Not to worry

Sen. Panfilo Lacson, a former national police chief, on Sunday sought to ease concerns over the President’s action.

“There is nothing to worry about the President’s declaration of state of lawlessness. Nevertheless, to avoid confusion, especially among our law enforcement officers and the public as well, very clear guidelines must be issued by concerned authorities as soon as possible,” Lacson said when asked for comment on the President’s declaration.

Lacson called on the President to acquire high-technology equipment, particularly intelligence-gathering tools, to boost law enforcement capability.

He said this should be part of preparations for amendments of the Anti-Wiretapping Law, which seeks to include drug-related crimes among exemptions to the bar on eavesdropping.

‘Intelligence nightmare’

“Terroristic acts are always an intelligence nightmare to state authorities. The Davao blast underscores the need to enhance our signal (electronic data transmission) intelligence capability, in anticipation of our impending amendment to the Anti-Wiretapping Law expanding the list of covered offenses to be exempt,” Lacson told the Inquirer in a text message.

“I would urge the President to start investing on the necessary technical equipment that could save the lives of innocent civilians who are the natural targets of terrorists to accomplish their objective of sowing fear and creating maximum impact,” he said.

He called Friday’s attack a “sarcastic challenge” to the President, theorizing that “it could only be perpetrated by a group that do not acknowledge the fear factor instilled by the Duterte administration or maybe one that is being severely damaged or hurt by the ongoing no nonsense offensive operations by the government.”

Not unusual

Senate Minority Leader Ralph Recto urged the President to immediately call for a meeting of the National Security Council (NSC) after his trip to Laos “so that other leaders of the nation could help him develop policies and programs that would crush the resurgent Abu Sayyaf.”

Recto, who was invited to the first NSC meeting that gathered four former Presidents in Malacañang on July 27, said “there is a need for a multipartisan discussion on the best way forward in these troubled times.”

“If he is looking for a template in shaping policy, then his expert handling of the NSC provides the best example,” Recto said.

Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza urged the public to stop “overanalyzing” the President’s declaration of a national state of lawlessness.

“It’s not unusual for a Chief Executive to show extra muscle and call out the troops amid attempts by the enemies of the state to sow bedlam,” Atienza said, pointing out French President Francois Hollande did the same after the Paris bomb attacks last November. With reports from Tarra Quismundo, Leila B. Salaverria, Dona Z. Pazzibugan and Jaymee T. Gamil


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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