MANILA -- House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on Tuesday said she was “happy” with the Supreme Court (SC) ruling that upheld the constitutionality of the extension of martial law in Mindanao until the end of 2019.
“It’s good. We’re very happy, because we voted to extend it,” Arroyo said in an interview.
Congress, in a joint session, voted to extend martial rule in Mindanao until Dec. 31, 2019 with a final vote of 235 for an extension, 28 against and one abstention.
On the part of the House, 223 voted to extend, 23 were against, with no abstention.
Meanwhile, 12 senators voted for extension, five were against and one abstained.
On Tuesday, the SC dismissed four petitions questioning the legality of the Congress-approved martial law extension with a vote of 9-4.
Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin and Associate Justices Diosdado Peralta, Mariano del Castillo, Estela Perlas-Bernabe, Andres Reyes Jr., Alexander Gesmundo, Jose Reyes Jr., Ramon Paul Hernando and Rosmari Carandang voted to junk the petitions.
Meanwhile, Associate Justices Antonio Carpio, Francis Jardeleza, Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa, and Marvic Leonen dissented.
This marked the third time that the SC upheld the constitutionality of the enforcement of martial law in Mindanao.
President Rodrigo Duterte first declared martial law over Mindanao in May, 2017 when Islamic State-inspired militants occupied Marawi City in Lanao del Sur.
In July 2017, the SC upheld the original martial law proclamation.
In February 2018, it affirmed the constitutionality of the year-long extension to the end of 2018.