[Appeal] PNoy give an explicit public support for the soonest passage of the proposed bill providing compensation to victims of human rights violations (HRVs) during the Marcos administration under Martial Law – #rememberML@40

HIS EXCELLENCY BENIGNO SIMEON AQUINO, III.
President
Republic of the Philippines
Malacanang Palace
Manila

September 20, 2012

Your Excellency,

September 21, 2012, the 40th year since the imposition of Martial Law by then President Ferdinand Marcos offers a kairos, a moment of grace and opportunity, to you and your administration. It is a momentous chance to show to the country and to the world that the matuwid na daan breaks through impunity and leads to justice.

All the undersigned request Your Excellency to give an explicit public support for the soonest passage of the proposed bill providing compensation to victims of human rights violations (HRVs) during the Marcos administration under Martial Law. A follow-up to your State of the Nation Address (SONA) on this matter would signal unequivocal determination in seeking justice.

Your support will solidly be grounded in the international human rights instruments the Philippines had ratified, as well as the increasing number of national laws passed compliant to many of the said treaties since the EDSA people power.

Your Excellency’s encouragement will surely enthuse the authors and /or supporters of the Bill from both Houses of Congress.

We, the undersigned, have been very concerned, if not alarmed, at conscious efforts even in cyberspace to distort the real happenings during martial law and to dismiss altogether the atrocious violations of rights and dignity. We thus launched a campaign within a period of six months earlier to broaden and to raise awareness among the citizenry, especially the youth, of the true situation during Martial Law and the justness of enacting a long-delayed compensation bill that is fair and equitable to all victims.

Such a move and passage, Your Excellency, would be unprecedented in the ASEAN and Asian Region. It will be a standard of fulfilment that would make us Filipinos all proud in the realm of human rights.

Thousands of victims of human rights violations engendered hope that the impunity perpetrated during that period of repression would be dealt with progressively when the Presidential Committee on Good Governance (PCGG) allotted a definite portion (Php 10 billion) of the confiscated ill-gotten wealth of the Marcos estate for the victims’ compensation. After all, the United Nations “Updated Principles in Combating Impunity” states, among others, “the right of victims to have an effective remedy and to receive reparations”. Compensation, then, while not the fullness, is an integral component of justice.

Thank you very much, Your Excellency, for the kind consideration of this our request that sincerely seeks

Dignity and justice for us all,

Max de Mesa
Chairperson
Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates
Lead Convenor
#Remember ML@40 – Never Again to Martial Law!
Campaign Network

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