CALOOCAN CITY, June 3 (PIA) -- Presidential spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque on Tuesday said President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has certified as urgent the proposed anti-terrorism bill to fast track the approval of the measure.
During his regular Malacanang media briefing multicast by the Presidential Communications and affiliate government media, Roque also clarified, however, that there are no draconian provisions to the anti-terror bill.
"That's actually a piece of legislation being deliberated by Congress. We always respect prerogative of Congress," the official said.
To recall, on Monday, June 1, the President wrote a letter to House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and said House Bill 6785 must be immediately passed "to address the urgent need to strengthen the law on anti-terrorism" and "effectively contain the menace of terrorist acts."
Senate Bill 1083 or the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2019, which seeks to "preserve national security and general welfare," was so far approved at the House committee level last week.
The bill seeks to amend the Human Security Act of 2007 by giving more surveillance powers to the military and police in order to thwart individuals supposedly engaged in terrorism.
Some salient points of the measure include the imposition of 12 years of jail time to any person who shall threaten to commit any act of terrorism, propose any such acts or incite others to commit terroristic acts.
It likewise, imposes life imprisonment on those who will facilitate terrorist acts or recruit people to join terror organizations or groups.
To facilitate case building by the authorities against suspected terrorists, the bill also seeks to extend the number of days lawless elements can be detained without a warrant of arrest - from three days under the current law to up to 14 days. (PIA NCR)