Press Release
December 10, 2018

Transcript of Ambush Interview of Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III

On extending martial law

SP Sotto: As I said I think there is actual rebellion happening.

Q: (Unclear)

SP Sotto: Kaya nga that's why I asked for a legal opinion, kasi may kanya-kanya kaming opinion tungkol doon. Some can say that the Congress ends in June 30, this Congress. The other opinion is that well, the next Congress can be wrong, if they want to. We cannot speak for them. But then again, there are twelve senators who are remaining into the next Congress, so their opinion matters. So medyo talagang debatable.

Q: Ano ang sentiments ng karamihan so far?

SP Sotto: Hindi na namin napagusapan yun kasi most of the talks were centered on what the AFP and PNP were presenting.

Q: Was (unclear) this time? Longer debate kasi may mga senators na nag-express na ayaw na nila?

SP Sotto: Not really. I don't know. Perhaps, it would be more or less the same timetable as the last one.

Q: (Unclear) outvoted naman kayo if ever?

SP Sotto: Oo. Mabuti na rin yung marinig nila yung sasabihin ng Senado, ng mga senador.

Q: Yung scenario na pinicture ng mga defense officials, mas difficult ba (unclear) as compared sa nakita ninyo doon sa first and second briefing?

SP Sotto: Hindi naman, there are more gains, pero mabigat pa rin, at kailangan tigilin na. In other words kailangan talagang mapigil na yung rebellion. Ang target nitong extension I think is to once and for all remove the issue of rebellion.

Q: Muslim brothers and NPA ang target?

SP Sotto: CPP-NPA.

Q: Ano ang strongest promise nila for this second time around sa extension?

SP Sotto: Part of the details na yan, I cannot (unclear).

Q: To wipe out the CPP-NPA?

SP Sotto: Oo, wipe out all of them. (Unclear) I cannot divulge that part, especially on the economic (unclear).

Q: Clear na po na baka i-bring-up yung Cha-Cha bukas?

SP Sotto: Hindi pwede.

Q: What will you do if that happens?

SP Sotto: It's not in the Joint Resolution that we will be passing, that's one. Two, we'll definitely not agree. I will adjourn the session of the Senate.

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