House panel approves death penalty bill


The House Justice Sub-Committee on Judicial Reforms has approved a bill that seeks to reimpose the death penalty on heinous crimes, including possession of at least 10 grams of illegal drugs.

The panel approved the substitute death penalty measure, a consolidated version of six bills, even if it was not listed in the agenda.

The six lawmakers who voted for the restoration of the death penalty are Deputy Speakers Gwen Garcia, Sharon Garin and Fredenil Castro and Reps. Aurelio Gonzales, Art Defensor and Ace Barbers.

Five lawmakers — Eric Singson of Ilocos Sur, Roger Mercado of Southern Leyte, Luis Campos of Makati, Victoria Noel of An Waray and Eugene de Vera — wanted the capital punishment meted only on drug-related offenses.

Barbers said possession of 10 grams of illegal drugs should be punishable by death to deter anybody from getting near drugs.

“This [10 grams] amount of drugs can be concealed and kept in a pocket. If we include this in the law [imposing death penalty, it will cause a fear factor and nobody would even dare carry drugs in his or her pocket. I believe that [step]is a deterrent,” Barbers pointed out.

But for Reps. Edcel Lagman of Albay and Ramon Rocamora of Siquijor, passing the death penalty bill without a committee report violates House rules.

“Who presided over the drafting of these substitute bills which are not even on the agenda? Who participated in such a meeting? This is a clear violation of our rules which requires a Committee report [on a substitute bill],” Lagman said.

“The Constitution requires a compelling reason to restore death penalty, and there is no compelling reason now. The railroading has begun. The message of the House leaders is clear: Have a deadly Christmas,” Lagman added.

Rocamora, a public prosecutor for 24 years, argued that bringing back capital punishment will lead to the execution of innocent people.

“I oppose the death penalty because our criminal justice system is not capable of implementing it. For one, 60 percent of drug-related cases stem from trumped-up charges because authorities find it difficult to find other evidence. Now, is it fair to put people to death based on trumped-up charges?” Rocamora stressed.

“We need to maintain our decency. We need to maintain our humanity,” he added.

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez of Davao del Norte earlier said the House will approve the death penalty measure before Congress adjourns for its Christmas break on December 14. Llanesca T. Panti


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  1. Who have not observed how Singapore and South Korea attained their economic, social and political prominence today? Although majority of the population are not “Christian”, unwittingly, they follow the doctrine of God regarding “physical life”. By the way, “physical life” should be distinguished from “spiritual life”. The former ends in the grave, the latter in “hell or heaven” as Bible believers know. God gave us the SOUL whose attributes are the “intellect and feeling”. To Peter, who recognized Jesus Christ personally was given this instruction for our “physical life”:

    1 Peter 2:13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be
    to the king, as supreme; 14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the
    punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. 15 For so is the will of God,
    that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

    Very clear from the foregoing, the “secondary purpose” of the soul is to guide us conduct our “physical
    life” with HUMAN WISDOM. Singaporeans and Koreans do not even know the Bible but they benefit
    from this doctrine of God. In the beginning everybody knows how they endured supreme sacrifice. But
    the result is what they are today, perhaps the envy of many people.

    In contrast, Christian countries, the Philippines seems to have missed the” primary purpose” of the Bible which is the salvation of the SOUL. Here, God condemns HUMAN WISDOM for with this “man formulates own doctrines of salvation” which is but semi-Biblical resulting in the proliferation of sects and denominations. Can we see not see “religious HALO-HALO” here?

  2. Sa mga politikong magnanakaw hindi ba kasama sa pwedeng bitayin, katulad ni Lagman, drillon, Trillanes at iba pa, pwede ng sampulan si Delima para malaman kung matalim na ang batas natin wika nga ni Sen. Paquiao…

  3. Corruption, treason, plunder and gross incompetence in all branches of government should be the main target of such an act. Massive crime syndicates, all encompassing corruption would not have prospered without all these lowlifes.

    But before that, complete transparency, unobstructed gathering of information, completely transparency of the banking system is a necessary condition to allow carrying out of a thorough investigations, get to the truth.

    And what congress rules? all the congressmen are more than unruly.

  4. “This [10 grams] amount of drugs can be concealed and kept in a pocket. If we include this in the law [imposing death penalty, it will cause a fear factor and nobody would even dare carry drugs in his or her pocket. I believe that [step]is a deterrent,” Barbers pointed out.

    I believe Barbers is a idiot.

    Instead of passing stupid bills have the dept of justice investigate the thieves in the house and the senate.

    Clean up the government first, Every government agency is corrupt and full of thieves.