Sen. Manny Pacquiao has renewed his calls for the re-imposition of the death penalty by invoking the bible.
The boxer-turned lawmaker, who has espouses strict Christian views, continues to be an advocate for capital punishment.
Pacquiao on a radio interview with DWIZ said that he would push for a hearing on the reinstatement of the death penalty.
He however clarified that he will restrict its coverage to heinous crimes, which he explained included drug trafficking, robbery with murder and kidnap for ransom.
“Kung Bible ang pag-uusapan binibigyan ng karapatan ang authority to impose death penalty to those who commit heinous crime even in our constitution, andiyan ‘yan. It’s not sa sarili ko, o kagustuhan ko, andiyan naman ‘yan sa Bible at constitution wala naman sigurong problema, pagdedebatehan naman ‘yan,” said Pacquiao during the interview.
Pacquiao’s pronouncement came a few days after Pope Francis, head of the Catholic Church, declared the death penalty “unacceptable in all cases,” a reversal of previous church doctrine which allowed capital punishment in certain cases.
The death penalty was abolished by the Philippines in 2006 through the passage of R.A 9346.
Some have criticized Pacquiao for his persistence on the advocacy.
Motion for Manny Pacquiao to STOP using religion at his own convenience. An example of a ~religious~ person who doesn't practice what they preach because this man doesn't even have a say on EJK, is a misogynist and also a homophobic. pic.twitter.com/EXINlrMoZP
— Manell Queen ✨ (@metromanella) August 5, 2018
— Bart Guingona (@guingonabart) August 5, 2018
Previously a devout catholic, Pacquiao in 2013 converted to Born Again Christianity.
He has also been accused of homophobia for saying gay people were worse than animals in 2016. His stance against same-sex marriage has drawn the ire of progressive and LGBT groups and advocates in the country.
In August 2016, Pacquiao started sounding off on his death penalty advocacy by declaring he had realized that God was “not just a God of mercy” but also a “God of justice” during his first privilege speech.
In another controversial statement in January 2017, Pacquiao defended the death penalty again by saying that “even Jesus was sentenced to die.”
Pacquiao has written three bills on reviving the death penalty.
The Philippines in 2006 ratified the “Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at the abolition of the death penalty”, a United Nations treaty signed by countries pledging to abolish the death penalty within their territory.