Senator Chiz Escudero sees no reason to reinstate the death penalty, supporting President Benigno Aquino’s position amid calls for its re-imposition following a spate of gun-related incidents in the country.
“The death penalty will not stop miscreants from carrying out their crimes. I have always said that it is still the certainty of punishment, not its severity, that will deter crimes,” Escudero said.
He chairs the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights.
The senator, who voted to remove the death penalty from the country’s statute books in 1990, said strict implementation of the law, proper application of the justice system, and protection by government law enforcement agents carrying out the mandates of the law will deter crime.
“Even if the death penalty is in place, criminals, especially the moneyed ones, will still find creative ways to escape the arms of the law. The likes of Jovito Palparan, charged with a non-bailable offense, the Reyes brothers of Palawan accused as master minds in the death of a journalist and environmental advocate, and Delfin Lee, said to have bilked thousands of poor housing aspirants, where are they? They can afford to hire good, expensive lawyers to keep them out of jail and outside the reach of the law,” Escudero said.
While the senator acknowledged that criminals have become emboldened to perpetuate grisly crimes, it is still the certainty of punishment and not the kind and nature of punishment that will deter the commission on crimes.
“Let no one go above or around the law. No sacred cows, apply the law to those who are guilty, have been found guilty. We have to improve and perfect our country’s criminal justice system, it should be strictly applied to make it valid and credible” Escudero said