The Supreme Court (SC) has been prodded to halt the implementation of the Anti-Terrorism Law while the high tribunal has yet to decide on the fate of the law.
In a joint motion filed Thursday (Nov. 26), petitioners of 23 out of the 37 petitions filed against the law appealed to the SC to either issue a status quo ante order, temporary restraining order, or preliminary injunction that would halt the implementation of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.
“The undersigned movants humbly submit that absent a status quo ante order or a temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction, the Government through the Respondents will continue to implement the Anti-Terror law of 2020,” the petitioners said.
They cited that “there were already cases involving its implementation including the filing of a criminal case against two still detained Aetas in Zambales” as well as “another case involving farmers in Negros Island.
“These reported cases are only those involving incidents of criminal prosecution. It does not include the implementation of its provisions involving acts like surveillance, ex parte examination of bank accounts and similar provisions. In fact, the Armed Forces of the Philippines publicly admitted that it placed under surveillance some of the petitioners and lawyers in this case,” they said.
“Additionally, some of the petitioners are being red-tagged by certain public officials including those comprising the Anti-Terrorism Council under the assailed law,” the petitioners added.
The petitioners reminded the SC that some of them have previously filed motions seeking injunctive reliefs which sought to halt the implementation of law.
“To date, the Honorable Court has yet to act on the said applications and motions,” they said.