The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Wednesday slammed Bayan Muna’s claims that the government is coercing local officials to support the Anti-Terror Bill.
Interior Secretary Eduardo M. Año earlier praised 784 mayors and governors for showing genuine support to the Anti-Terrorism Act even if many opposed the said measure.
Año said of the 784 local officials, 43 are governors who are 53 percent of the total number nationwide.
Having the full support of local government units of 50% of the provinces in the Philippines is already a victory on ending terrorism, he added.
Meanwhile, 68 city mayors and 673 municipal mayors also expressed their support in the passage of the Anti-Terrorism Bill.
The DILG Secretary pointed out that Region IV-A has the most number of LCEs supporting the Bill with 96, followed by Region II with 91; 88 for Region III; CAR with 80; and Region I with 73. Other regions such as MIMAROPA have 58; Region XI with 53; Region VI with 52; and Region XII with 50, while Regions V, VII, and XIII have 24, 21, and 32 apiece. NCR and Region VIII have six and four, respectively.
“We have been receiving support from all LGUs across the country,” Año said.
He said Metro Manila Mayors League Chairman Edwin Olivarez, San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora; Makati City Mayor Abby Binay; Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno; Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez; and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio also back the measure.
“Generally, I would say about 80 percent are supportive, most of the local executives see the value and importance of the anti-terrorism bill,” Quirino Governor and Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) president Dakila Carlos Cua said.
DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said Bayan Muna is insulting local executives by saying they could be persuaded to support the Anti-Terror Bill.
Malaya also accused Bayan Muna of being insensitive to the suffering of residents and LGUs being victimized by terrorists such as “Marawi, Samar, Bicol, Caraga.”
Malaya asked Bayan Muna not to “look down on LGUs and assume that they cannot think for themselves.”
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said yesterday President Rodrigo Duterte is getting inclined to sign the Anti-Terror Bill as the Palace is taking a final look at the controversial measure.