The enactment of the anti-terrorist law is one of the biggest contributions of the Duterte administration to the country’s defense and security, Department of National Defense spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said on July 20, 2020.
The new law, signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last July 3, allows a more stable and peaceful environment needed for the country’s development, he said.
“The enactment of the Anti-Terror Law will provide a solid and secure foundation to establish a stable and peaceful environment which will jumpstart national development and finally achieve a comfortable life for all Filipinos,” Andolong said.
The Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 or Republic Act 11479 repeals RA 9372 or the Human Security Act of 2007. It seeks the detention of suspected terrorists for up to 24 days sans a warrant of arrest.
It also allows a 60-day surveillance with an allowable 30-day extension that can be conducted by the police or the military against suspected terrorists.
The law also imposes a 12-year jail term on a person who voluntarily or knowingly joins a terrorist organization.
Andolong also said other Duterte contributions to the country’s security include the whole-of-nation approach in creating lasting peace, the National Defense Strategy which ensured the protection of the Filipino people and the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Part of this is the establishment of the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) and the implementation of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).
The NTF ELCAC came into being after Duterte signed Executive Order 70 on December 4, 2018, which institutionalizes the whole-of-nation approach against communist insurgency.
While E-CLIP is the flagship program of the Duterte administration that seeks to effect social healing and national unity and provides social equity to former members of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front and the Militia ng Bayan by devising a different modality of giving benefits and services to the former rebels, in order to reintegrate them into mainstream society. (Priam Nepomuceno, PNA)