PROCLAMATION NO. 55
DECLARING A STATE OF NATIONAL EMERGENCY
ON ACCOUNT OF LAWLESS VIOLENCE IN MINDANAO
WHEREAS, Mindanao has had a long and complex history of lawless violence perpetrated by private armies and local warlords, bandits and criminal syndicates, terrorist groups, and religious extremists;
WHEREAS, in recent months, there has been a spate of violent and lawless acts across many parts of Mindanao, including abductions, hostage-takings and murder of innocent civilians, bombing of power transmission facilities, highway robberies and extortions, attacks on military outposts, assassinations of media people and mass jailbreaks;
WHEREAS, the valiant efforts of our police and armed forced to quell this armed lawlessness have been met with stiff resistance, resulting in several casualties on the part of government forces, the most recent of which was the death of 15 soldiers in a skirmish with the Abu Sayyaf Group in Patikul, Sulu on 29 August 2016;
WHEREAS, on the night of 2 September 2016, at least 14 people were killed and 67 others were seriously injured in a bombing incident in a night market in Davao City, perpetrated by still unidentified lawless elements;
WHEREAS, the foregoing acts of violence exhibit the audacity and propensity of these armed lawless groups to defy the rule of law, sow anarchy, and sabotage the government’s economic development and peace efforts;
WHEREAS, based on government intelligence reports, there exist credible threats of further terror attacks and other similar acts of violence by lawless elements in other parts of the country, including the metropolitan areas;
WHEREAS, under Section 18, Article VII of the Constitution, the President, as the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines, may call out such armed forces whenever it becomes necessary to prevent or suppress lawless violence.
NOW THEREFORE, I, RODRIGO ROA DUTERTE, President of the Republic of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested upon me by Section 18, Article VII of the Philippine Constitution, do hereby proclaim a state of national emergency on account of lawless violence, and hereby command the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to undertake such measures as may be permitted by the Constitution and existing laws to suppress any and all forms of lawless violence in Mindanao and to prevent such lawless violence from spreading and escalating elsewhere in the Philippines, with due regard to the fundamental civil and political rights of our citizens.
This proclamation of a state of national emergency on account of lawless violence shall remain in force and effect until lifted or withdrawn by the President.
4 September 2016.
(Sgd.) President Rodrigo Roa Duterte
By the President:
(Sgd.) SALVADOR C. MEDIALDEA