On Martial Law in Sulu, Duterte says he needs time to decide

Reacting to the suggestion of Prof. Octavio Dinampo of Save Sulu Movement (SSM) to place six Municipalities of Sulu under Martial Law, Pres. Rodrigo Duterte said Tuesday, May 16, he needs time to decide because he does not want to “tinker with the extraordinary powers of the government.”

The six Municipalities that are allegedly haven of Abu Sayaaf terrorists are Patikul, Indanan, Parang, Maimbung, Talipao, and Kalingalan Caluang.

SSM alleged that local politicians in said municipalities are coddling ASG terrorists.

“I need time to ponder on it deeply. It not is only a political decision, it’s an emotional decision. You do not tinker with the extraordinary powers of the state,” Duterte said as reported by Mindanews .

But Duterte admitted in his arrival speech that a declaration of martial law is a very serious one.

“I will solve everything that ails Mindanao. I will not just tinker with it. It’s a very serious one. If I declare Martial Law there is no way of telling how long it will take to restore order, or we might not be able to succeed. Just the same, I’m warning everybody, if I declare martial law there is no telling how long it would be and for what purpose,” he said.

In a media statement released on May 4, Dinampo’s group (SSM) also called on the Senate to conduct an inquiry to look into possible links between local politicians and Abu Sayyaf terrorists, as he accused that some government officials are receiving a “lion’s share” of the ransom money.

SSM wants the politicians criminally liable for conniving with the terrorists as it believes the crackdown on erring politicians will put a dent on the activities of the terrorists.