Friday, July 20, 2007

Commentary on the Human Security Act of 2007 (Anti-Terrorism Law)

I've been reading so much protests against a law, direly needed by this terrorists-laden country, that still hasn't been implemented due to ignorance of our law enforcers about it's provisions and built-in safety nets against abuse.

Ever present militants, always quick to point out "flaws" and invitation to abuse against "legitimate dissent" presenting scenarios of abuse by the crooked members of the police and military, but always fail to present the safety nets to guard against abusers and wrongful detention clearly indicated in the law.

For example, reading sections 7 and 8 of the law, various activities can't be done without permission from the Court of Appeals, an institution I still respect. But if people no longer hold the CA in respect, separate from the unpopular executive branch of government, then I understand why people raise a howl of protest against the law.

This government has dismal record in guarding against human rights but I don't believe GMA has a direct hand in all of them. GMA merely is powerless to do anything against the perpetrators either she has lost her control over the armed forces or people who should be able to help either kept silent or silenced forever.

During my trip to Singapore (blog post here), the Asia-Pacific Financial Crimes Conference, the Philippines was singled out as the weakest link in the region's fight against terrorism due to it's weak military and absence of anti-terror law. (Not that I only knew of it during my Singapore trip but I welcome the news of its filing in Congress, delayed, passed and delayed implementation after the midterm elections.)

The government and the Filipino people, with a sword of Damocles hanging over our heads in the form of terrorists who kill and bomb and maim innocent civilians, need to be fought with punitive actions and a law to arm them well.

Militants fighting the law's implementation should give it the benefit of the doubt; if it's abused by the powers-that-be, use the law's provisions against abusers with stiff penalties stated there.

I feel the pain of bombing victims more when I learn that savage people behind the dastardly acts were once arrested, detained, but later set free after posting bail.

The law may be draconian and Big Brotherish but I believe it's really needed by the government in it's fight, actually the people's firght, against all acts or terror.

HSA is there to contain the plague of humanity-- for terrorists not to see the light of day-- never to kill, maim and bomb again another day.

Read the full text of Republic Act 9372: Human Security Act here.

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