DND ready to submit martial law reports to SC

By Priam Nepomuceno

January 24, 2019, 5:01 pm

MANILA -- The Department of National Defense (DND) on Thursday assured compliance with the Supreme Court (SC) order asking it to submit periodic reports regarding the implementation of martial law in Mindanao.

"We respect the SC’s mandate to ensure the legality of issues pertaining to our country especially with the issue of martial law and we will comply with their guidance to submit the periodic reports," said Arsenio Andolong, DND spokesperson, in an interview with reporters.

In a separate message, DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the agency is more than ready to submit the requested documents.

"Yes, we are prepared," the defense chief said.

In its resolution dated Jan. 22, the SC ordered the Office of the Solicitor General to submit the DND's "Monthly/Periodic Reports addressed to the Congress on the implementation of Martial Law from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018 which involve highly sensitive and confidential matters affecting the security of the State", not later than Friday noon.

The SC also explained that members of the Court will then "make a preliminary assessment whether or not the said reports may only be appropriately discussed and deliberated upon in an executive session".

The High Court is set to hold an oral argument on the three other consolidated petitions that were filed earlier by various groups also seeking to declare as unconstitutional the third extension of martial law in Mindanao on January 29. (PNA)