Amid Pimentel's call for the abolition of the law on capital punishment, the distressed mother of the murdered Chiong sisters appealed to Ms Arroyo in a letter not to buckle under foreign pressure and to uphold Philippine law.
"Being a mother yourself, I have no doubt that you can understand the grief and sorrow of a mother who has lost two exceptionally wonderful and God-fearing daughters," Thelma Chiong said in her letter.
The two victims were sisters Jacqueline, 23, and Marijoy, 20.
The Inquirer obtained a copy of Mrs. Chiong's letter from the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC), one of the groups in favor of the death penalty.
"To undo the entire judicial process because of undue pressures exerted by other countries, which constitute an unwarranted encroachment on our mmmm
sovereignty as a nation, would be highly prejudicial not only to our family, but more particularly to the entire justice system of this country," she said.
Chiong told the Inquirer she was beginning to question the justice system in the country.
"We fought hard just to get justice for my daughters," she said.
6 years on death row
Larraņaga, now 26, has been on death row for six years, along with the others.
Pimentel, author of a Senate bill seeking the abolition of capital punishment, said Ms Arroyo's position was a virtual admission that the death penalty was not an effective deterrent to crime.
Idle death chamber
Ms Arroyo's refusal to implement the death penalty also reflects badly on her because she is mandated to enforce the laws, Pimentel said.
"But by repealing the death penalty law, there will be no more criticisms that the President is reneging on her responsibility to implement the laws," he said.
"And we will see an end to an abnormal and ridiculous situation wherein the criminal offenders are slapped with the death sentence, death convicts continue to swell our prisons, but the lethal injection chamber remains idle."
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