Monday, March 13, 2006

A Telling FAUX PAS In Proclamation 1017 Noted in Senate Hearings

QUESTIONS BEGGED BY SENATE HEARINGS ON PROCLAMATION 1017:

(1) Does a Presidential Proclamation with a gross and obvious Constitutional Citation Error have legal force?


(2) If one of the WHEREAS clauses in Proclamation 1017 cites the 1987 Freedom Constitution but reads from the 1973 Marcos Charter a corresponding provision in which the two vastly differ in simple meaning and clear intent, does Proclamation 1017 have any moral force?

(3) How true is theory that the President has acquired all the powers of martial law and/or the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, while getting around the Congressional and Judicial safeguards intended under the 1987 Constitution?

At the Senate Hearings on Proclamation 1017, these were only a few of the questions that have been raised by the intense legal and moral analysis to which Proclamation 1017 has been put by many active minds in the Philippine Media, Academe, Politics and the judiciary itself since 24 February 2006. Justice Vicente Mendoza (retired from the Supreme Court) and Professor Gwen de Vera of the University of the Philippines Law School delivered eloquent, syllogistic proof that Proclamation 1017 violates the Letter and the Spirit of the Law.
AN IRONIC AND TELLING OBSERVATION about Proclamation 1017 (State of National Emergency) comes from University of the Philippines Law School Professor Gwen de Vera during testimony at the Philippine Senate today. Evidently, one of the WHEREAS CLAUSES of Proclamation 1017 erroneously and embarrassingly invokes as its basis the 1973 Marcos Martial Law Constitution and not the current 1987 Freedom Constitution!

Look at Proclamation 1017 at the Malacanang Palace website, in particular it's Seventh Whereas Clause --
WHEREAS, Article 2, Section 4 of our Constitution makes the defense and preservation of the democratic institutions and the State the primary duty of Government;
But in the referenced provision of the 1987 Constitution (Article II Section 4), one finds instead
Section 4. The prime duty of the Government is to serve and protect the people. The Government may call upon the people to defend the State and, in the fulfillment thereof, all citizens may be required, under conditions provided by law, to render personal, military or civil service.
Then, if one looks in Article II Section 2 of the 1973 Constitution that Ferdinand Marcos rammed down the throats of the Filipino people when HE made himself Dictator, one indeed finds Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's true inspiration--
Section 2. The defense of the State is the prime duty of government, and in the fulfillment of this duty all citizens may be required by law to render personal military or civil service.
Where Marcos' 1973 Martial Law Constitution makes the defense of the STATE the prime duty of government, the 1987 Freedom Constitution contrarily proclaims that the prime duty of government is to serve and protect the people. What in the world are reasonable men and women to make of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's telling faux pas in Proclamation 1017? Prof. de Vera's remarks were in conjuction with those of former Supreme Court Justice Vicente Mendoza, who gave a succinct lecture on the entire body Constitutional and legal considerations currently enveloping Proclamation 1017 and the actions undertaken by the government in its name.

DISCUSSION TICKLER Prof. Gwen de Vera has today's money quote in the following segment of today's Senate hearings on 1017. She believes Proclamation 1017 is a kind of subterfuge, an end-around the Constitutional safeguards on martial law powers being exercised by the Executive in a way that avoids the mandated Congressional and Judicial oversight and review. Senator Dick Gordon speculates about even more sinister and ominous possibility...

Senate Testimony on Proclamation 1017
Prof. Gwen De Vera and Senator Dick Gordon


Marvin Aceron (La Vida Lawyer) noted the eerie similarities in Proclamations 1017 and Marcos declaration of martial law in Proclamation 1081 some weeks ago. By the way, I did not do any justice to the fundamental points of Constitutional Law presented by former Supreme Court Justice Vicente Mendoza in this post. Fortunately Gwen de Vera did, as well as Dean Andy Bautista of the FEU Law School. who amplified other critiques and analysis of Proclamation 1017. Professor Randy David also made some statements at the Senate hearing, mainly relating to to his illegal arrest and detention and the situation that evolved near the Edsa Shrine on 24 February 2006 in the immediate aftermath of the Proclamation 1017. Randy David was apparently negotiating with General Radovan (ground commander of the dispersal unit) about certain steel barricades in place, which he feared might become the occasion for a repeat of the tragic Wowwowee stampede.

BEYOND MARTIAL LAW? If Senator Dick Gordon is right that Proclamation 1017 is merely a prelude to something bigger than the weakened form of martial law allowed in the 1987 Charter, and if Professor Gwen De Vera is right that Proclamation 1017 is already a virtual, undeclared form of martial law that even skirts Congressional and Judicial review, then the prediction is for more repressive measures from the Arroyo government and not less. The Palace has not gained much breathing space since the state of national emergency was declared and lifted. Instead it has reaped from the people a whirlwind of ... well... Eternal Vigilance!

14 comments:

HILLBLOGGER said...

Hi DJB,

I think it's proper to dissect, inspect and pronounce a verdict on Gloria legalese surrounding the proclamation of 1017. She and her cabinet of like warped minds (Ed Ermita disappoints me no end) may debate and argue with the best constitutional lawayers of the land but in the final analysis she LIED when she declared a foiled coup plot was the basis of her proclamation of Emergency rule.

The Senate, the people, the AFP, every citizen of the Republic should attack the technicality of her basis because she not only lied t the nation but she's also she's demeaned the AFP, she dishonored them by calling them Communist lovers and assasins. THERE WAS NO COUP D'ETAT PLOT, CONSPIRACY, ATTEMPT, FOILED OR WHATEVER - THERE WAS NO COUP D'ETAT - PERIOD!

Gloria Macapagal Arroyo should be stripped naked, her ego slaughtered and her crooked guts bared for the world to see.

Rizalist said...

thanks for that HB. But something new has cropped up in the Senate hearing today. Sen. Gordon is on the case. He thinks that because "martial law" was weakened or diluted by the 1987 constitution, "martial law" as such can't even be ENOUGH to guarantee survival. He suggests the Palace is innovating on some kind of "revolutionary govt" -- check out the MP3. also the arguments of both Mendoza winkingly suggests that ANY of the actions taken which presumed martial law powers -- when they legally don't -- are culpable under existing law.

It goes beyond legalese to the the basis for criminal suits against, eg. Lomibao. Using the Rule of Law!

HILLBLOGGER said...

Just amazing DJB!

Goes to show we can't trust this woman.

She's hell bent on holding on to her illegitimate presidency at all cost.

She makes me puke!

john marzan said...

He thinks that because "martial law" was weakened or diluted by the 1987 constitution, "martial law" as such can't even be ENOUGH to guarantee survival.

if you want to have dictatorial powers, yung 1973 constitution ang mas magandang gamiting basehan ng mga proclamations.

pero mas maganda kung palitan mo na lang yung 1987 constitution ng bago, katulad ng ginagawa ni arroyo ngayon...

HILLBLOGGER said...

I believe that it is already determined that there was no coup d'état attempt (there was a plot by some officers to call on their more senior offices to withdra support for Arroyo which constitutes an Act of Subordination in military law or at worst a failed mutiny attempt), therefore the proclamation of SOE - as Sen Gordon said - was a spectre of bigger thing to come ...which was corroborated by the lady professor (from what I understood on the MP3 recordings) as having had all the elements of Marcos' martial law.

Aha!

So, DJB, what should happen next?

HILLBLOGGER said...

John,

Did you see what I posted in MLQ3's blog?

I re-posted what DJB was your V A L U A B L E
news flash of 2001...

HILLBLOGGER said...

Ooops, "what DJB called V-A-L-U- A-B-L-E..." was what I meant..

john marzan said...

thanks hill.

Karl M. Garcia said...

Eternal vigilance...
Yes DJB..that would be the result.
of having ever proclaimed pp1017


DJB, sana di bitin yung trekking with the goings on...kailangan mong i cut short...

di namin napalmpas ni HB,BFR at John sa 26 ang comment posts...


John....
Sir, wala po ako sa military ha ..sibilyan lang po ako..ang ama ko po ang dati nasa militar...
plagay ko naman ay naintindihan nyo pag sinabi ko na ako ay military brat na minsan naexplain na ni Hill blogger..
sinubukan ko lang po mag bigay ng opinyon dahil hiningan nyo ako ng opinion...

Karl M. Garcia said...

For those who bash the senate for all the investigations

Must now realize its importance...

For those who want a unicameral government...Think again...

Who says more laws and biills are make a better government...

Less laws are fine
dapat nga bawasan pa nga lalo na yan mga di feasible na law..

Ngayon ko naapreciate ang check and balance powers ng senado!

HILLBLOGGER said...

Karl,

You are already being extremely brave when you voice your opinion against the sitting cmmander in chief knowing that your Dad served in the military in a high-level capacity.

I don't think anyone should even ask you to do more than what you are doing today.

Your comments are a great moral support for those of us who are anti-Arroyo.

Fair wind, Karl!

bernardo F. Ronquillo said...

DJB, I now marvel at how GMA can still be in Malacanang inspite of all sectors of Philippine Society coming out against her.

And now your post points out she quoted the wrong law in declaring 1017. What more crime can she do against the Pilipino people before she is forced to step down? Does she still a ounce of decency left to voluntarily step down?

baycas said...

benipayo already quit...forced? who knows...

Rizalist said...

BFR, Baycas, It is just staggering to think what the Chief Executive can get away with. But the textual error leaves me agog that the Supreme Court is not tearing their robes in public. Maybe the public will have to do it for them, the Bums!