VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Duterte changes tune on SC’s role in martial law

Four days after placing the entire island of Mindanao under martial law, President Rodrigo Duterte said he would not listen to the Supreme Court (SC) or Congress when the decree would be lifted.


In a speech before soldiers at Camp Teodulfo S. Bautista in Jolo, Sulu on May 27, the president said even he doesn’t know when martial law would be lifted. He would only listen to the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces when the right time would be, he said.

“Hindi ako makinig sa iba. Mga Supreme Court, ‘yung mga congressman, wala man sila dito. Ba’t sila ba ang nagpapakamatay? Sila ba ang naghihirap dito? Sila ba ‘yung… They will suffer the wounds of war (I won’t listen to the others, not even the Supreme Court, nor members of Congress. They’re not here. Are they the ones who go into battle? Are they the ones who go through hardships? Are they the ones who will suffer the wounds of war)?”

Source: Speech of President Rodrigo Duterte during his visit to Camp Teodulfo S Bautista, Barangay Bus-bus, Jolo, Sulu, May 27, 2017, watch from 11:20 to 11:41


In a media interview on June 9 in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, the president changed his tune and said he would now heed the High Court on martial law.

Duterte said it is up to the High Court to appreciate the circumstances in the event the ISIS returns.

“Kung magbalik ‘yung mga ISIS doon. Bahala na ang Supreme Court diyan mag-appreciate (If the ISIS comes back, it is up to the Supreme Court to appreciate the facts).”

Source: Media interview following his visit to the 603rd Brigade Oval, 6th Infantry Division (6ID), Philippine Army

Asked by a reporter if he would “follow whatever the Supreme Court says,” Duterte replied:

“Of course. We are bound by rules. Supreme Court na ‘yan (That’s the Supreme Court). Maybe you may differ individually with your (inaudible). Because you cannot agree on almost anything all the time. It is the matter of… Itong (This)… the setup of government. What is the final answer. I’m sure that they would take into account the fighting going on, and what’s behind it. Ang nakakatakot ‘yung ISIS (What’s scary is the presence of ISIS).”

Source: Media interview following his visit to the 603rd Brigade Oval, 6th Infantry Division (6ID), Philippine Army

Duterte declared martial law through Proclamation No. 216 on May 23 following the attack of the Maute terrorist group in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur.

The SC started hearing Tuesday oral arguments on petitions to nullify martial law in Mindanao.


Presidential Communications Operations Office

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