MANILA -- President Rodrigo Duterte will consider the military and national police's recommendation to declare martial law in the southern province of Sulu, following a double bombing that killed at least 14 people and injured dozens, Malacañang said Wednesday.
“The recommendations have been made, and he listens to those on the ground,” Duterte's spokesman Harry Roque told CNN Philippines.
“Although the recommendation has been made, the President has to be very careful that it will pass the scrutiny of both the legislative and judicial branches of government,” he added.
Authorities initially said a female bomber on Monday blew herself up while authorities cordoned off the town plaza of Jolo after a homemade bomb strapped to a motorcycle exploded.
The Bangsamoro police later said both blasts could have been carried out by suicide bombers.
Reacting to criticism over Duterte's failure to mention the blasts in a late Monday speech, Roque said the President held a command conference with military and police leaders, and could have issued a directive there.
The government will recognize the heroism of the state troops killed in the attack and give aid to their families, he said.
With a report from Joyce Balancio, ABS-CBN News