MANILA— House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez said Congress will no longer be convening for a joint session on President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of martial law in Mindanao considering that Malacañang will submit its report in writing.
“Malacanang will send their report to Congress in writing. Thusly, there will be no need for us to convene tomorrow or Friday,” said Alvarez on Wednesday night.
According to the 1987 Constitution, the President is mandated to submit a report, whether in person or in writing, to Congress within 48 hours from the proclamation of martial law.
“The Congress, voting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session, may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not be set aside by the President,” the Constitution read.
“Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress in the same manner, extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by Congress, if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it,” it added.
President Duterte declared the entire Mindanao island under martial law following clashes between government troops and members of the Maute group in Marawi City.
The development also prompted Duterte to cut short his official visit to Moscow and flew back home Wednesday afternoon.
The violence started Tuesday afternoon after the military conducted operations to flush out Isnilon Hapilon, a top terrorist suspect, from his hideout in Marawi City.