ICC loses all credibility

Ranged against former president Rodrigo Duterte, the partisan International Criminal Court had become a body bereft of integrity and which is plunging headlong into perdition.

While yet to be specifically identified as a defendant, the popular former president has been preparing for a legal strategy through a team of luminaries led by international law expert Harry Roque to engage the ICC in its meddlesome effort to investigate his signature war on drugs.

On Thursday, during his visit to the wake of the late president Fidel Ramos, Mr. Duterte sought to be excused from commenting on his successor Chief Executive Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s decision to keep the country off the Rome Statute that effectively withdrew its membership in ICC.

Nonetheless, he had strong words against the ICC and gave hints about his legal campaign in the face of the tribunal’s preliminary investigation on the war on drugs.

The ICC will be proven as it really is, considering the fully functioning local judiciary.

Key to the offensive is to establish that the Philippines was never part of the ICC, and thus all its hypocritical efforts cannot be enforced on the country.

“I am a Filipino and it does not have jurisdiction. They never acquired jurisdiction because the Rome agreement was never published in the Official Gazette, especially the laws the Constitution require, especially the penal law that forms part of the law of the land: You must publish it,” according to Duterte.

He was consistent on this regard, which has been drilled among Filipino lawyers, which is the need for a law to be made public through the Official Gazette.

The former leader who remains a favorite whipping boy of foreign media had maintained the ICC has no jurisdiction over him as the Rome Statute was “not effective nor enforceable in the Philippines.”

“Under our law, particularly the New Civil Code, a law shall become effective only upon its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation. Devoid of the legal requirement, the Rome Stature is ineffective and unenforceable,” Rody said.

He added “an international law cannot supplant, prevail or diminish a domestic law.”

The Philippines ceased to become an ICC member in March 2019, but the international body claimed it retained jurisdiction since the complaint of the yellow stooge Jude Sabio, which the ICC acted on, covered incidences when the country was a member.

“If I will be prosecuted, it will be a prosecutor who is a Filipino. If I have to be judged, it will be a Filipino judge. If I go to prison, I should go to Muntinlupa.” That’s the classic Duterte that majority of Filipinos continue to respect.

In contrast, the ICC is desperately clinging on making a spectacle out of the Philippines, believing that it can salvage lost reputation by doing the hypocritical liberal democratic movement that boasts billionaire financiers a favor.

It appears Mr. Duterte, despite the end of his six-year term, is not done yet since he appears determined to take on the ICC and plant a sucker punch on its high-raised chin.

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