UN vs UN?! Ping weighs in on UN exec’s call to President Duterte not to sign Anti-Terrorism Bill
Has it become a case of the United Nations versus the United Nations?
Sen. Panfilo Lacson raised this question Thursday after UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet asked President Rodrigo Duterte not to sign the proposed Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.
Lacson, who was the guest at a meeting of the Rotary Club of Manila, said it was the UN Security Council that had chided the Philippines to strengthen its anti-terrorism laws, and the anti-terrorism bill followed standards set by the UN.
“So United Nations against United Nations. I think the UN SC members have read the provisions of this bill because sila nangulit sa amin dito. Unfortunately and I can safely assume that the one voicing (her) opinion against this measure, I doubt if (she) has read the provisions under the measure,” said Lacson, who sponsored the bill in the Senate.
He also reiterated the Anti-Terrorism Council as defined in the bill does not have judicial or quasi-judicial powers, and follows the guidelines set by the UN Security Council Resolution 1373.
“Ang guidelines, standards set by UN SC Resolution 1373, yan ang sinunod namin dito, yan ang parameters. Beyond that, the ATC cannot act on any request for designating a terrorist organization,”he said.
Lacson also said they had to amend the provisions of RA 10168, the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012, is because it has not been effective.
He said the 2012 law had no mechanism to trigger the designation of terrorist groups, but the proposed Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 provides such a mechanism.
“To cite an example, the Marawi siege could have been preempted by authorities because there was no failure of intelligence insofar as the Marawi siege is concerned. But the flow of funds was almost unstoppable because the authorities could not act on the flow of such funds to finance the Maute group in coordination with ISIS because there’s something lacking in the law. That’s one of the purposes why we included in our amendments the provisions of RA 10168, by providing such mechanism to preempt or prevent the flow of funds to assist the terrorists, either homegrown or with links to some terrorist organizations in other parts of the world,” he said.