Lorna Kapunan says no to death penalty

Jee Y. Geronimo
Lorna Kapunan says no to death penalty
'To have [the death] penalty, [we have to be] morally certain we have a justice system that works'

MANILA, Philippines – She’s a tough-talking lawyer who wants to see a change in the country’s justice system, but there’s one thing Lorna Kapunan will keep the same: the abolition of death penalty in the Philippines.

During Rappler’s first senatorial debate on Friday, April 8, Kapunan said she’s not in favor of bringing back the death penalty, especially with the kind of justice in the country.

Kung nabibili hustisya, p’wede mang-bribe, magbigay ng pera [para] manalo ka, hindi fair ang justice system natin. Hindi tayo sigurado [na ‘yung] dapat ikulong, nakukulong,” she explained.

(If you can buy justice, if you can bribe and give money in order to win cases, then our justice system is not fair. We’re not sure if those deserving jail time actually get jailed.)

Kapunan added, “To have [the death] penalty, [we have to be] morally certain we have a justice system that works.”

The death penalty was abolished in 1986 when President Corazon Aquino took over the reins of power from Ferdinand Marcos. It was reintroduced by President Fidel Ramos in 1993, then suspended again in 2006.

Part of Kapunan’s legislative agenda is to push for an honest government where the justice system is “inclusive regardless of one’s status in life.”

She said this justice system not only includes the country’s penitentiaries, but also the rehabilitation of offenders. She zeroed in on minors in rehabilitation centers.

Dapat tingnan natin. Hindi offenders, kriminal ang minors. They are victims…. [We have to] reassess the system of rehabiliation of victims,” Kapunan added.

(We have to review it. Minors are not offenders, criminals. They are victims. We have to reassess the system of rehabiliation of victims.)

Kapunan faced off with Liberal Party senatorial bet Jericho Petilla and independent candidates Levi Baligod and Greco Belgica during Friday’s senatorial debate held at the AMA University in Quezon City.

Kapunan is part of the Senate slate of presidential candidate Grace Poe and running mate Francis Escudero. – Rappler.com 


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Jee Y. Geronimo

Jee is part of Rappler's Central Desk, handling most of the world, science, and environment stories on the site. She enjoys listening to podcasts and K-pop, watching Asian dramas, and running long distances. She hopes to visit Israel someday to retrace the steps of her Savior.