Executive Sec. Salvador Medialdea and Senate President Vicente ‘Tito’ Sotto III confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte has requested that Congress allow a third extension of the Martial Law in Mindanao.
Medialdea said that Sotto and House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo will call for a joint session in regards to the request of the President for the extension of martial law.
In a separate statement, the Senate President said that he still waits for a letter from the President for the joint session, which might happen on Wednesday, Dec. 12.
“Monday morning may briefing kami from AFP. I’m still waiting for the President’s letter re joint session. He sent me a message saying he might call for it on Wednesday, Dec. 12,” Sotto said in a text message to reporters.
In their joint recommendation, the Department of National Defense, the Philippine National Police, and the Armed Forces of the Philippines insist that martial law is needed to ensure peace during the Bangsamoro plebiscite and the elections in Mindanao on 2019.
The Chief Executive placed the whole Mindanao region under martial law on May 2017 after the Islamic State inspired Maute Terror Group attacked Marawi City, Lanao Del Sur. It was only supposed to last for 60 days.
However, Congress granted the request of Duterte to extend martial law to December 2017, and a subsequent request for martial law extension until December 2018.