Author Archives: Human Rights Online Philippines

[Statement] Pro-people and rights-based COVID-19 response is needed, MAG demands for a comprehensive COVID-19 pandemic response | MAG

#HumanRights #HealthWorkers #COVID19ph

MAG Statement
Pro-people and rights-based COVID-19 response is needed, MAG demands for a comprehensive COVID-19 pandemic response
September 3, 2021

More than a year in lockdown, the Philippine government still needs to understand that the imposition of wide-scale lockdowns will not suffice in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. By September 1, 2021, the Philippines recorded a total of two (2) million COVID-19 cases. With a population of 109 million people, only around 33 million doses have been administered, with 13.7 million individuals fully vaccinated, and 19.3 million got their 1st dose, as of August 29, 2021.

As the Philippine government continues to fall behind in supporting the overwhelmed health system, more and more lives of Filipinos are put at risk. The recent issue on misuse and underutilization of DOH funds and questionable COVID-19 supplies procurement, involving PhP 67 billion worth of COVID-19 funds has raised concerns on corruption within the health department. At the same time, reports of patients not able to access health services, whether for COVID-19 or not, due to overcapacity of hospitals have become common. The government needs to hasten crafting solutions in accordance with these realities in the grassroots and the health facilities. Specifically, this may include provision of additional life support equipment (e.g. ventilators and hospital oxygen supply), establishment of systematic contact tracing, integration of local and national referral systems such as the One Hospital Command Center to effectively coordinate COVID19 and non COVID19 cases, as well as faster vaccine rollouts.

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URGENT: Early Notice Regarding the Possibility of the Persecution of the Executive Coordinator of KontraS and Lokataru, Fatia Maulidiyanti and Haris Azhar | KONTRAS

URGENT: Early Notice Regarding the Possibility of the Persecution of the Executive Coordinator of KontraS and Lokataru, Fatia Maulidiyanti and Haris Azhar

The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS)—a human rights non-governmental organization based in Jakarta, Indonesia— would like to give early notice for accommodating safe space for the possibility of the persecution of Executive Director of Lokataru, Haris Azhar, and Coordinator of KontraS, Fatia Maulidiyanti.

On August 26, 2021, the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Panjaitan, gave a subpoena to Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti through their attorney Juniver Girsang & Partners regarding a talk show on Haris Azhar’s youtube channel with the title “Ada Lord Luhut dibalik Relasi Ekonomi-Ops Militer Intan Jaya!! Jenderal BIN Juga Ada!!” (There is Lord Luhut behind the Economic Relations-Military Operations Intan Jaya!! The General of the State Intelligence Agency is also there!!).

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[Statement] on the murdered human rights lawyer, Rex Fernandez | by Bishop Alminaza

Bishop Alminaza statement on the murdered human rights lawyer, Rex Fernandez

“There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” – John 15:13

On behalf of the Visayas Clergy Discernment Group (VCDG), a 2008 CBCP initiative to address social concerns, I express our grief over the senseless murder of human rights lawyer Rex Fernandez. He was killed last August 26, 2021 in Cebu City.

Lawyer Rex Fernandez, a former Redemptorist seminarian, had a heart for the people and had touched so many lives.

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[Tula] Pakikiisa sa laban ng health workers | ni Greg Bituin Jr.

PAKIKIISA SA LABAN NG HEALTH WORKERS

sa mga health workers kami’y sadyang nakikiisa
sa isyu nila, sampu ng aking mga kasama
upang itaguyod ang mga kapakanan nila
at kami’y sasama sa kanilang kilos-protesta

ipakita ang matagal na nilang mga hinaing
na ibigay na ang benepisyo nila, gayundin
ang hazard pay nila, allowance para sa pagkain
tirahan, transportasyon, special risk allowance din

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[From the web] Victims and their families will engage a justice system that they can trust | iDEFEND

Victims and their families will engage a justice system that they can trust- iDEFEND

The report of the ICC registry indicating an overwhelming support of victims and their families towards an investigation into the war on drugs by the International Criminal Court, proves the lack of credibility of the Philippine system to provide justice to more than thirty thousand cases of extrajudicial killings in the country.

According to the Victims’ Participation and Reparations Section of the registry, there had been more than 200 submissions to the ICC supporting the request of the prosecutor to launch a formal investigation into the human rights violations in the country. The VPRS cited that some reasons given by the victims are the reign of impunity entrenched by the President, the unending trauma that they endure, and their conviction that their relatives did not fight back against authorities.

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[Right-Up] Sino ang mga Bayani at mga Bangag, Bulag at Talipandas ng Bayang ito? | ni Jose Mario De Vega

Sino ang mga Bayani at mga Bangag, Bulag at Talipandas ng Bayang ito?

Sa kanyang paskil sa Facebook noong Agosto 25 ay sinabi ni G. Jose ang mga sumusunod:

“In these perilous times we need heroes. Those young NPA rebels killed by this country’s Armed Forces—whatever their personal achievements, however their courage, are not Filipino heroes. They fought to destroy this Republic in their protracted war. Was Ninoy Aquino a hero? He had murky connections that provoke this question. His massive funeral—never in our history has such event occurred. Is this enough to anoint him? Our thousands of workers who left this country that cannot sustain them—how truly heroic are they? Our frontline health workers—fatigued, sometimes underpaid—many have died—how do we recognize their heroism? In my novel Po-on, the fictional Mabini declares—“the heroes are the foot soldiers, the peasants who produce our food.” Now, look at the mirror and ask yourself, “Have I toiled, suffered and sacrificed something precious for Filipinas? You may not know it, friend, but our unhappy country needs you.”

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[Statement] The Importance of Eliminating Enforced Disappearance in Asia | by Asia Alliance Against Torture

Joint Statement on the International Day of the Disappeared: The Importance of Eliminating Enforced Disappearance Practices in Asia
Asia Alliance Against Torture
August 30, 2021

Today, on the occasion of International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, the Asia Alliance Against Torture (A3T) condemns the practice of enforced disappearances that continues to occur in Asia. It is a cruel practice that perpetuates impunity, where the government shows no political will to investigate and solve cases of enforced disappearance. Marking today’s annual commemoration of the Day of the Disappeared, the A3T would like to highlight the importance of eliminating enforced disappearance practices in Asia.

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[Statement] AFAD Commemorates the UN International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances

AFAD Commemorates the UN International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances
30th August, 2021

Manila: Today, on the occasion of International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD) remembers the victims across the globe and extends solidarity to the families of the disappeared and countless human rights defenders fighting to put an end to impunity amid great challenges. According to the United Nations, enforced disappearance is more than “a human rights violation against an individual”. Enforced disappearances affect the entire family of the victim and is “used as a strategy to spread terror within the society”.

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[Event] Facebook Live! International Day of the Disappeared: Remembering their Heroism and Activism | CAED

Facebook Live! International Day of the Disappeared: Remembering their Heroism and Activism

The event aims to forge unity while honoring and paying tribute to the desaparecidos as well as expressing solidarity with the hundreds of thousands of families and relatives around the world who are searching and waiting for their disappeared loved ones to return home.

Coalition Against Enforced Disappearance (CAED) believes that it is imperative for us to unite, draw inspiration from the lives of the disappeared, and together help their families especially in these unprecedented times.

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[From the web] Lessons Unlearned: Fight for Inclusive Education Carries into Second Year of Remote Learning | by Isaiah Castro/ PhilRights.org

#HumanRights #Education

Lessons Unlearned: Fight for Inclusive Education Carries into Second Year of Remote Learning
by Isaiah Castro

“It makes me anxious,” John Carlou, 20, confesses when asked how he feels about remote learning. “Since it started, I have been struggling financially, mentally, and emotionally. Also, learning at home does not work well for me because I keep doubting myself.”

The eldest among four children, John Carlou resides in the rural Daanbantayan town in northernmost Cebu. An incoming third-year student of political science at the University of the Philippines (UP) Cebu, he admits that he feels “alienated” and is still adjusting to the virtual set-up. He worries about his performance, especially during the heavily stressful final exams, which reflects on the grades he received last semester.

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[Petition] Stop Kaliwa Dam, Save our Future! | Change.org

Stop Kaliwa Dam, Save our Future!

The Kaliwa Dam Project violates legal processes and the Philippine constitution, is destructive to the environment, and is against the country’s national interest.

With the increasing demand for water supply in Metro Manila, costly options appear to seemingly solve this concern. In fact, the recent “water crisis” was used to expedite and justify the New Centennial Water Source-Kaliwa Dam Project as the solution to such.

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[Event] Kwentong Kalikasan, Kwentong Kaliwa Dam | Stop Kaliwa Dam

#HumanRights #IndigenousPeoples

Patuloy ang ating pagpupugay sa mga katutubong Pilipino!

Malaki ang ambag ng mga katutubong komunidad sa pambansang kaunlaran – sa pang-ekonomiko, sosyo-kultural, sa kalikasan, at marami pang iba.

Kilalanin pa natin sa Kwentong Kalikasan, Kwentong Kaliwa Dam, ngayong Martes, 2:00 ng hapon, live dito sa Facebook!

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[Tula] Panawagan ng Maralita | ni Greg Bituin Jr.

Panawagan ng Maralita

tingni ang tarpolin nila’t kaytinding panawagan
na talagang ikaw mismo’y mapapaisip naman
krisis daw sa pagkain, trabaho at kabuhayan
ay marapat daw lutasin para sa mamamayan

ipaglaban din ang karapatan sa makatao
at abot kayang pabahay, panawagang totoo
pahayag nilang ito’y tumitimo sa puso ko
na di sila dapat maapi sa panahong ito

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[Off-the-shelf] 𝗥𝗲𝘀𝗽𝗼𝗻𝘀𝗶𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗠𝗶𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗶𝘀 𝗙𝗔𝗞𝗘 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 | 𝗔 𝗯𝗼𝗼𝗸𝗹𝗲𝘁 | ATM

𝗥𝗲𝘀𝗽𝗼𝗻𝘀𝗶𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗠𝗶𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗶𝘀 𝗙𝗔𝗞𝗘 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 | 𝗔 𝗯𝗼𝗼𝗸𝗹𝗲𝘁

𝘞𝘩𝘺 𝘪𝘴 𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘱𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘪𝘣𝘭𝘦 𝘮𝘪𝘯𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘧𝘢𝘬𝘦 𝘯𝘦𝘸𝘴?

  1. It was a fall-back position after sustainable mining was discredited by environmental groups.
  2. Responsible mining has no legal definition, no parameters and is not measurable. Best practice is not enough.
  3. Mining must be done in the context of other Philippine laws. Responsible mining cannot merely be the implementation of the Philippine Mining Act of 1995.
  4. The current proposed model of responsible mining by the DENR or the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (CoMP) has never been completed in one single mine in the Philippines.
  5. It is only possible if given free, prior or informed consent (FPIC) by indigenous peoples or social acceptability by non-indigenous peoples.
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[Event] WeDecide-Alternative Politics Youth Bootcamp (Y-CAMP) | YND

#HumanRights #Youth

Enroll for free and be part of WeDecide-Alternative Politics Youth Bootcamp (Y-CAMP) with the theme “WeDecide to Alterpolitics. WeDecide for the future, Now!”

Y-Camp Highlights:
The youth camp will bring together youth leaders and volunteers of Alternative Politics Movement. The youth campers will also shape the collective decision of the youth for a free, intelligent, and critical voting.

This activity will also gather volunteers, pool of speakers, writers, cultural warriors and digital soldiers.

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[Statement] Karapatan condemns the killing of Atty. Rex Fernandez

#HumanRights #StopTheKillings

Karapatan condemns the killing of Atty. Rex Fernandez in Cebu City yesterday, August 26.

As Karapatan’s former legal counsel, Atty. Fernandez handled cases of rights violations, and represented victims and their families in court for years and defended political prisoners charged with trumped-up cases.

A few years after the writ of amparo – a legal remedy to seek protection amidst threats to life, liberty and security – was made available by the Supreme Court in 2007, Atty. Fernandez served as legal counsel in petitions for writ of amparo on a number of cases of abductions and enforced disappearances. Among these were the petition for the writs of amparo for Romulo Robinos, Ryan Supan, and disappeared UP students Karen Empeno and Sherlyn Cadapan. He also lawyered for peasant activist Noriel Rodriguez and Filipino-American activist Melissa Roxas, both abducted, detained and tortured in Cagayan and Tarlac, consecutively, both in the year 2009.

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[Statement] On the brutal killing of Cebuano lawyer-activist Rex Fernandez | SANLAKAS

#HumanRights #StopTheKillingsPh

𝐒𝐭𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐨𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐛𝐫𝐮𝐭𝐚𝐥 𝐤𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐟 𝐀𝐭𝐭𝐲. 𝐑𝐞𝐱 𝐅𝐞𝐫𝐧𝐚𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐳

Sanlakas vehemently condemns the brutal killing of Cebuano lawyer-activist Rex Fernandez.

To date, Fernandez is the 64th lawyer assassinated under President Rodrigo Duterte, himself a lawyer. Human rights defenders, among them lawyers, have been defenseless targets of murderers who remain at large. Their fault lies in their vigilance and persistence in defending the poor and marginalized as well as being active in causes for social change. The unabated killings make more evident the complicity of the Duterte Government in both encouraging attacks on human rights defenders and failing to exact justice from perpetrators.

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[Statement] on the ambush of lawyer Rex Fernandez | CHR Spokesperson, Atty Jacqueline Ann de Guia

#HumanRights #StopTheKillingsPh

Statement of CHR Spokesperson, Atty Jacqueline Ann de Guia, on the ambush of lawyer Rex Fernandez

The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) condemns the killing of lawyer Rex Fernandez in Barangay Guadalupe, Cebu City on Thursday afternoon, 26 August 2021. CHR will be sending a quick reaction team to conduct an independent investigation on this incident.

Fernandez was said to have been ambushed by unidentified assailants when his vehicle stopped at an intersection. The lawyer died on the spot. The lawyer’s driver was reportedly left wounded after the attack.

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[People] The Loss of Life in a Twenty-Year War | by FR. Shay Cullen

#HumanRights #Peace

The Loss of Life in a Twenty-Year War
by Fr. Shay Cullen

Life is precious and sacred. Many people believe in the sanctity of the human person with rights and dignity to be protected and preserved. This is not true for many more who kill and murder and execute their perceived enemies. Those that declare war and invade other nations are also guilty of bringing death and destruction. There is no “good” war. In the end, after millions are dead and wounded, peace is negotiated and made, and life returns to normal. Why then fight the war in the first place and not negotiate a settlement of differences before violence is inflicted? That is because war is very profitable for weapons manufacturers. A prolonged “endless” war is the best thing ever for the industrial military complex.

This industry dominates and greatly influences American politics and the US economy. It is what President Dwight Eisenhower warned the nation about in 1946. He called it a danger to the nation. The permanent armaments industry is today immensely greater and more powerful. It needs, and perhaps, promotes continuous wars to sell more arms to prosper and grow.

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[From the web] Global torture prevention community calls for protection of Afghanistan’s national preventive mechanism | APT

#HumanRights #Torture

Global torture prevention community calls for protection of Afghanistan’s national preventive mechanism

The recent Taliban military offensive poses a grave threat to the continued independence and functioning of Afghanistan’s National Preventive Mechanism (NPM) – the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) – and for the safety of its members and staff.

Everyone in Afghanistan who has engaged in work to promote human rights and democracy now faces a serious risk of reprisals under the Taliban. At particular risk are the women who lead and work for the AIHRC. All those under threat, including the staff of the AIHRC and their families, need protection including, if necessary, through visas and safe passage.

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