SEVERAL incumbent and returning senators are open to the proposal of presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte to restore the death penalty but the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) said the reimposition of capital punishment will not deter crime.
Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th said that he favors Duterte’s proposal but it should not be by hanging.
“The methods on how to carry out the penalty are procedural, but the general intent to strengthen our laws specifically against illegal drugs, I’m all for that,” the senator added.
Sen. Panfilo Lacson also expressed his support to Duterte’s proposal but does not favor death by hanging.
“Aside from being inhumane, I don’t want our people, much less our children, to witness medieval age-like executions even of the most notorious criminals,” Lacson explained.
Other members of the senate have yet to come out with their position on the matter but some lawmaker already made their stand.
Sen. Vicente Sotto 3rd, Sotto has been pushing for the revival of the death penalty especially for big time drug traffickers.
Sotto is the author of Senate Bill 2080 or an act imposing death penalty in the Philippines though lethal injection.
Sen. Grace Poe, during the presidential debate in March, said that she is in favor of bringing back death penalty but only for those proven guilty of heinous crimes.
She however explained that capital punishment should only be taken as a last resort and that Congress should work first reform the justice system.
Sen. Francis Escudero on the other hand is against the reimposition of the death penalty because it denies convicts the opportunity to rejoin society.
Escudero has worked for the repeal of the death penalty since he first became a lawmaker in 1998.
Meanwhile, the CHR on Monday said that reviving the death penalty should be in accordance with law.
“The CHR is prepared to explain its position to Congress as to why it is against the reimposition of capital punishment. It should be noted that more and more states are abolishing it,” CHR Chairman Jose Luis Martin “Chito” Gascon said in a text message.
“The reasons why the national and international human rights community are on principle opposed to death penalty is first, it constitutes what is effectively cruel, inhuman, and degrading punishment that is prohibited in the Bill of Rights and International Law, second, it is contrary to the rehabilative purpose of criminal justice and does not fully consider the possibility of mistake as it cannot be undone,” he added.
Malacañang also said it will be up to the next Congress if it will pass a law allowing the reimposition of the death penalty.
“Lifting of death penalty requires that present law be amended. It is best that this be tackled by the next Congress,” Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. told reporters.