[Malaybalay 2nd district Rep. Jonathan Keith Flore explains through a press statement on 04 June 2020, why he abstained from voting on HB 6875 (the proposed Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020), at the House of Representatives on 3 June 2020]
I have abstained from voting. While I completely understand the need for the bill and while I, without question, agree that the fight against terrorism is crucial, we also need to call a spade a spade.
Our judicial system is, unfortunately, designed in such a way that it is disadvantageous for many who cannot afford proper legal representation.
The anti-terrorism bill is very prone to abuse. The penalties are too extreme. Take the 14-day detention (extendible by another 10 days) without judicial warrant of arrest, for instance. As a lawyer, I cannot agree with this kind of infringement of very basic constitutional rights.
As the voice of the Bukidnon 2nd District, I believe that we need to be more circumspect. Let us fight terrorism while upholding human rights and following due process.