Nilektyuran kahapon ni Senate President Pro-Tempore Franklin Drilon ang chief legal counsel ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte dahil sa paninindigan nitong maaaring ideklara ang Martial Law sa bansa dahil sa laki ng problema ng iligal na droga.
“Even a freshman law student can easily debunk Atty. Salvador Panelo’s statement as having no legal basis. I do not know which Constitution he has learned in law school but our present Constitution has only provided two grounds for the declaration of martial law — invasion or rebellion. Drug menace is definitely not one of them,” diin ni Drilon.
Sa mga naunang interview kay Panelo, sinabi nitong “the magnitude of the drug problem that has risen to a crisis proportion may require the application of the provision of the Constitution when it says that the President can declare martial law when the public safety requires it.”
“The presidential chief legal counsel would want us to believe that the Constitution allows the President ‘to declare martial law, not only in case of invasion or rebellion, but also when public safety requires it’,” buwelta ni Drilon sa pahayag ni Panelo.
Ipinaliwanag pa ng senador, naging kalihim din ng Department of Justice, na pinapayagan lamang ang deklarasyon ng martial law sa ilalim ng 1987 Constitution kung may “actual invasion or rebellion” at pangalawa, “when public safety requires it”.
Ang dalawang requisite na ito, ani Drilon, ay binalewala ni Panelo.
Nilektyuran pa ni Drilon si Panelo na ang phrase na “when public safety requires it” ay hindi maituturing na ground sa deklarasyon ng martial law.
“I think it is time that Atty. Panelo review basic legal principles to better serve the country as the President’s chief legal counsel and to avoid issuing erroneous and reckless statements,” payo ni Drilon sa mabokang legal counsel ni Duterte.