Senator Bong Go said President Rodrigo Duterte is still studying the proposed exemption of Davao City from martial law considering security concerns.
“I cannot speak in behalf of the President, but he is concerned that the terrorists might run and hide here in Mindanao,” Go said.
Davao City Councilor Mabel Acosta, peace and public safety committee chairperson, recently filed a resolution requesting the President to exempt the city from the coverage of the island-wide martial law.
Davao Mayor Sara Duterte announced during the 5th Davao Investment Conference (ICon) in June her intention to ask for the lifting of martial law following her dialogue with ambassadors and officials of other countries who attended the event.
“I support the stand of Mayor Sara.”
Go who visited fire and monsoon wave victims in Davao City, said he supports the stand of Mayor Sara, knowing that the city is a very peaceful place to live in.
However, the lawmaker said the decision whether to lift martial law here is still in the hands of the President based on the recommendation of the military, intelligence authorities, and the Department of National Defense.
“As a Dabawenyo, I witness how peaceful the city is but I also understand the position of the national government on this issue,” the senator added.
He also explained that the military presence in Mindanao is meant to not only protect the island from terrorists but also to deter them from coming in.
“Our military was not involved in any abuse and the Mindanaoans know that.”
“The good thing is that, our military was not involved in any abuse and the Mindanaoans know that,” Go stressed.
The President declared martial law over Mindanao on May 23, 2017 amid the siege of Marawi City by Islamic State-inspired terrorists.