Lacson notes urgency in passing anti-terror law

Chair of the Senate committee on national defense and security, Senator Ping Lacson said that there is urgency in passing the anti-terror law.

“Medyo may urgency. Sayang nga ang last Congress, because walang HOR counterpart. Kaya hindi na rin namin masyado pagdating sa Senate. But this time around, we’ll see to it that we will coordinate closely with our HOR counterpart for the early passage of this measure,” Senator Lacson said in interview with reporters.

He also said that NGOs and the religious sector were asked for inputs. “We invited them pero ang iba hindi dumating. Even ang mga NGOs we invited them even during last year’s public hearing but they just sent their position papers, some did not even bother to submit,” he said.

“What can we do? We cannot also delay the passage of this measure because kailangan natin. As we know, may mga Filipino suicide bombers na nga sa Mindanao, hindi lang foreign terrorists,” he said.

On prolonging the detention period for suspected terrorists, Lacson said “We heard the arguments, we heard the discussion. Yan ang period na meron silang enough basis na kailangan nila to gather more evidence and information to preempt further terrorist activities. Yan naka-incorporate sa bill. This is based not only on our domestic discussions but even in other jurisdictions, in foreign countries, yan ang sinusunod nila.”

“In fact, ibang countries nga walang limit, not only 14 days, mas mahaba pa. 14 days reglamentary period for violation of the anti-terrorism act, extendible by judicial authorization for another 15 days,” he said. “Medyo mahirap ipasa dahil ang 14 days lang, I expect to see resistance from the progressive-minded lawmakers.”