According to Coconuts media, “Our favourite government nuisance, Atty. Salvador Panelo, is back and he brought a ton of crap with him.” Speaking on ABS-CBN News Channel’s (ANC) HeadStart on Sep 15, the presidential legal adviser said he is contemplating the idea of giving legislative and executive powers to President Rodrigo Duterte to speed up reforms.

Shades of Martial Law for those who are old enough to remember!

In the Philippines, the three branches of government — executive (the president), legislative (the senate and congress), and judicial (the Supreme Court) — are separate, independent, and equal to one another. Through this separation and equality, a certain system for checks and balances are set in place. But it looks like Panelo doesn’t care about that. “What I am saying is, it’s constitutional,” Panelo told host Karen Davila.

He explains, “You revise the Constitution, give the powers to the President — legislative and executive powers. So in a sense it’s like dictatorship because he has two powers but all of them are constitutional. We need this power… So more often than not, there is no more excuse…to fail,” Panelo added.

Panelo clarified that even though it is stated in the Philippine Constitution, the president can declare martial law “when public safety requires it.” However, Panelo assured the public that Duterte is “a man of integrity beyond corruption, who has a political will and he walks his talk,” so he is sure the President will not abuse his power. Just like the case of Panelo’s “mind-melting” maroon/burgundy suit, this looks another case of “just because you can doesn’t mean you should.” (Source: coconuts media)

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