THE revelation of new terror threats in troubled and impoverished but natural resources-rich Mindanao has thrust out front the need to speed up the passage of House Bill (HB) No. 5382.
Otherwise known as the “Terrorism Threat Deterrence Act of 2017,” the proposed legislation calls for the registration of all users of prepaid mobile phones and social media in the country.
Under the measure, telecommunication firms, internet service providers and social media networks are mandated to create an efficient identification mechanism for the deterrence of terrorist activities.
Telecommunication companies are required to have all Filipino prepaid users register their accounts using a government-issued identification card and a barangay certificate of good moral character.
A foreign visitor, on the other hand, needs to present his/her passport showing his/her identity.
Various quarters, including the ordinary citizens, believed that Manila Rep. Manuel “Manny” Lopez acted in the best interests of the country and the Filipino people when he filed HB No. 5382.
President Duterte had earlier told senators of new and serious plots to sow terror in southern Philippines, where government troops have been battling rebels, bandits and other lawless elements for decades.
Lopez, vice chairman of the House committee on public order and safety, said the new terror threats should not be ignored as this would affect the country’s economy and peace and order.
“Sa paniwala ko, malaki ang maitutulong ng… (panukalang) batas para mahadlangan ang paggamit ng internet o social media at prepaid mobile phones ng mga terorista para sa kanilang komunikasyon, propaganda at psy-war operations laban sa pamahalaan,” said Lopez.
Indeed, the revelation of new terror plots and threats in the southern Philippines is expected to speed up the approval of the proposed “Terrorism Threat Deterrence Act of 2017.”