President Rodrigo Duterte has signed an executive order creating the National Amnesty Commission as a step towards attaining peace in the country, Malacañang said Monday.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the commission would be tasked to process applications for amnesty of former rebels and determine whether the applicants are eligible “in connection with the recent amnesty proclamations pending concurrence of Congress.”
“Kasama ito sa ating hakbang tungo sa kapayapaan kung saan inalok natin ang kamay ng kapayapaan sa ilang mga grupo para sila po ay bumalik sa normal at payapang buhay (This is one of our steps towards peace wherein we offer a hand of peace to various [rebel] groups to entice them to return to a normal and peaceful life),” Roque said in a press briefing.
Roque said the commission would be composed of seven members, including a chairperson and two regular members who will be appointed by the President.
The ex-officio members of the Commission include the secretaries of the Department of Justice, Department of National Defense, Department of the Interior and Local Government, and the Office of Presidential Peace Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity.
“Ang amnesty po, parang hindi nangyari ang mga bagay-bagay na nagawa ng ilang mga grupo ‘no na usually po ay isang krimen na magiging krimen ang rebelyon. Kaya po kinakailangan din ang concurrence sa Kongreso dito dahil binubura hindi lang iyong pangyayari kung hindi pati po ang parusa (In [granting] amnesty, it’s as if the crimes committed by certain groups never really happened in the first place. That’s why the concurrence of Congress is essential because amnesty not only erases the crime, but also the punishment),” Roque said. SOVEREIGNPH