President Rodrigo Duterte is not authorized to designate groups as terrorist organizations under the new Anti-Terror Law, says Senator Panfilo Lacson
According to the senator, Under the new act, Only the Court of Appeals or the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC) will have the authority to declare if one organization is a terrorist group.
Lacson made the comments after Duterte declared that the communist party and its armed wing were terrorist, saying the ‘declaration’ made by Duterte is a personal opinion and not official.
Sen. Ronald ‘Bato’ dela Rosa echoed Lacson’s comment saying what the President said are his views.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) is also required by the law to show proof in classifying an organization as a terrorist group. Lacson said that The legal proscription process goes through the same due process which the DOJ has to prove.
The trial of the proscription case against the CPP-NPA is still currently pending before the Manila Regional Trial Court. Since the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 has been enacted, the trial will be transferred to the Court of Appeals to be authorized by the Supreme Court. The Anti-Terror law repeals the Human Security Act of 2007 that punishes those individuals and organization who will propose incite, conspire, participate in the planning, training, preparation, and facilitation of a terrorist act.