“Art. 114. Treason. – Any Filipino citizen who levies war against the Philippine or adheres to her enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the Philippines or elsewhere, shall be punished by reclusion temporal to death and shall pay a fine not to exceed 100,000 pesos.
No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses at least to the same overt act or on confession of the accused in open court.
Likewise, an alien, residing in the Philippines who commits act of treason as defined in paragraph 1
of this Article shall be punished by reclusion temporal to death and shall pay a fine not to exceed 100,000 pesos. (as amended by SEC. 2, RA 7659)
—Revised Penal Code
WE quote the provision of the Revised Penal Code on treason to avoid any debate on its meaning and its clarity. It is written in plain and simple English except for the minimum penalty for the commission of the crime. This provision is so paramount in the current discussion of the speed with which President Noynoy wants the proposed Bangsamoro Law (BBL) passed so he can sign it within his term.
Why the suicidal rush?
As we have pointed out in our previous columns, the BBL as proposed by President Noynoy and the MILF is so constitutionally infirm that no amount of revision or amendment can make it validly constitutional. There is no way the proposal can be amended to survive the elementary test of constitutionality, even if we have to assume the absurd that Senator Bongbong Marcos is as brilliant as his late father, which he is not.
So why the suicidal rush? The reasons are simple.
First, Noynoy has to fulfill his much rumored commitments to Malaysia and the USA. Honoring such commitments is the last line of defense of Noynoy from removal |from office before the end of his term. If the leaders of the USA would be unhappy with Noynoy, then the groups courting the USA for a coup in the Philippines to oust Noynoy would gain an upper hand in the power game. The moment the USA supports or gives blessings to such an adventure, then Noynoy is finished and would be reduced to tending to whatever garden he has in Boston.
Second, if Noynoy fails to deliver, Malaysia will intensify support for its running dogs and the country will have explosions all over the place which Noynoy and his AFP cannot contain. That way, Noynoy is kaput and it will be the end of his hallucinatory concept of the matuwid na daan.
Third, Noynoy will be shamed before the international community as the refusal of Congress to honor the commitments of Noynoy renders useless his international projection that he is the most powerful force in the country with no contending forces capable of successfully opposing him.
Fourth, he will start losing support from among his leaders and followers as failure to pass the BBL is a concrete evidence of being a lame duck and inutile President. This is beginning to show in the action of some leaders of the LP to withdraw their support for Mar Roxas as Noynoy’s presidential candidate and, instead, endorse Senator Grace Poe as a more probable and credible winner in the presidential derby.
So Noynoy has to do something in a rush since Asperger syndrome will prevent him from having insoluble problems with the USA, Malaysia, his supporters and followers. Passing BBL is a projection of political strength for Noynoy. Failure to pass it means he is really nothing but Noynoy, which he really is. Nothing more, probably less!
But what if the impossible happens?
The impossible is if the BBL gets passed courtesy of Noynoy’s acolytes – Senate President Frank Drilon and Speaker Sonny Belmonte. What next? This means the area of engagement will shift to the Supreme Court. In that environment, it is not improbable that the Supreme Court may declare the BBL constitutional considering the High Court’s decision in the Juan Ponce Enrile’s bail case and the very recent EDCA ruling of the Court.
If this happens, there will be a flood of demos in Metro Manila – some before the Supreme Court and the others in historic demo places in the cities of the national capital. The demos will generate a flood of problems for Noynoy. It will intensify his interminable smoking habits. It will maximize his losses to Josh, his nephew, in his favorite computer games. It will mean losing more hair, with him sporting a Yul Brynner head and a Jack Palance face. This is an interesting development in Malacañang Palace for a change, so tempting for Noynoy’s followers to shout, Viva Noynoy!
But long before the shouts die down, there may be marching feet and beating drums that could drown out the shouts of the Noynoy true believers. This could be gleaned from Senator Juan Ponce Enrile’s thrust that Noynoy allowed the slaughter of the SAF 44 in Mamasapano as Noynoy did not do anything to help them while they were being killed.
This conclusion is nothing new. We have written this in our columns over and over again but it did not merit any attention from mainstream media because I have no position in government and Enrile looms large in the political equation.
If Enrile pursues this line and, I think he will, knowing that this is a major part in the current political equation, Noynoy will be in very serious trouble. With the volatile situation in the country, the Enrile accusation is packed with a lot of incendiary materials. This is an invitation to a beheading if Vladimir Nabokov were to write the story, most especially considering Enrile’s alignment in the present political positioning game.
There is no way Noynoy can effectively combat the Enrile charge. The evidence is overwhelming and Noynoy’s ship is sinking.
The ISIS and ISIL components
If the BBL is passed and enforced, the ISIS and the ISIL will strengthen their vanguard in this part of the world. It is not improbable for the MILF to establish a Islamic state in Mindanao, if the Christian and lumad communities do not wake up in time. Considering that Noynoy will do nothing to prevent the incursions of the Bangsamoro into the other parts of Mindanao and taking into consideration the superior arms and funding of the Muslim separatists, it is just a matter of time that the non-Muslim communities will be on the run, unless they will allow themselves to be beheaded or they will convert to Islam as an opportunistic move for survival.
The Noynoy majority in the Lower House and the Senate should have this situation in mind before they recklessly approve the BBL. They should also remember that Noynoy and his co-conspirators in their contrived BBL scenario are charged with treason in the Ombudsman. It is only a matter of time before they are included in the charge if they continue with their present course of backing Noynoy in betraying our country and our people.
The betrayal is undeniable
Every move that Noynoy has thus far made fits the definition of treason under Article 114 of the Revised Penal Code – the P5 million which Noynoy delivered to Chairman Murad in Tokyo to help the insurgent Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF); entering into an agreement with the MILF allowing it to occupy and control part of Philippine territory; giving a stand down order while the SAF 44 were being slaughtered; entering into an agreement with the MILF to pass the BBL which violates several fundamental provisions of our Constitution; continuing to press for the passage of the BBL despite knowing the constitutional infirmities of the proposed law.
This experiment in violating fundamental provisions of our Constitution and playing games with the treason law of our country violate the oath of office of the President which is “to faithfully and conscientiously my duties as President of the Philippines, preserve and defend the Constitution, execute its laws, do justice to every man, and consecrate myself to the service of the Nation.”
It is really the end game for Noynoy. He should pray that he should be able to finish his term in the light of serious challenges brought about in a dysfunctional electoral system and the damning issues that come from the silent graves of the SAF 44 who fell in Mamasapano due to a dysfunctional President.