Duterte on Anti-Terror Law: ‘Huwag ho kayong matakot kung hindi ka terorista’

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President Rodrigo Duterte allayed fears of the public about the newly-enacted Anti-Terrorism Law, saying they should not be afraid of it if they are not terrorists.

In a public address, first since he signed the widely-criticized law, the president assures all law-abiding citizens of the country will not be affected by the law.

“For the law-abiding citizen of this country, I am addressing you with all sincerity. Huwag ho kayong matakot kung hindi ka terorista. Kung hindi ka naman sisirain mo ang gobyerno, pasabugin mo ang simbahan, pasabugin mo ‘yung public utilities, pasabugin mo ‘yung, just to derail, matumba na tuloy ang bayan,” he said.

[For the law-abiding citizen of this country, I am addressing you with all sincerity. You should not be afraid if you are not a terrorist. If you are not going to destroy the government, or blow up a church, blow up public utilities, just to derail, topple the government.]

“Kung wala mangyari na masama, wala namang problema (If nothing bad happens, then there is no problem). Pero (But) once you blow up simbahan, blow up mo ‘yung marketplace. The right to defend itself accrues to the government heavily,” Duterte explained.

The new law, which has been opposed by several civic groups and law experts because of its potential to silence government critics, is now facing several petitions at the Supreme Court.

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