Tag Archives: Inquirer.net

[In the news] Angel Locsin: ‘Kung magkaiba tayo ng paniniwala, hindi ibig sabihin pwede mo na ako i-red tag’ -INQUIRER.net

#HumanRights #NoToRedTagging Angel Locsin: ‘Kung magkaiba tayo ng paniniwala, hindi ibig sabihin pwede mo na ako i-red tag’

“Kung mag kaiba tayo [ng paniniwala], hindi ibig sabihin pwede mo na ako i-red tag. Hindi tayo magkakalaban dito.”

(If we have different views, that doesn’t mean you can red tag me. We are not enemies here.)

This was what Angel Locsin said on Friday after Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Southern Luzon Command chief Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr. warned actress Liza Soberano and other celebrities to withdraw their support for women’s group Gabriela.

In his statement posted on Facebook, Parlade warned Soberano and Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray not to “follow the path” of Ella Colmenares, who he alleged “took in the underground” is now a member of the New People’s Army (NPA).

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[In the news] San Carlos bishop seeks release of political prisoners amid pandemic -INQUIRER.net

BACOLOD CITY — San Carlos Bishop Gerardo Alminaza has asked the release of political prisoners to decongest the jails in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alminaza pointed out in a statement released on Saturday, March 28, the looming possibility that coronavirus would hit the highly congested jail facilities in the country.

“We must muster courage to address the glaringly high-risk of a COVID-19 outbreak, now forced upon those behind bars,” he said.

To help decongest the jails, he said the more than 600 political prisoners in the country should be prioritized for release as they had been detained on “questionable and dubious charges.”

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San Carlos bishop seeks release of political prisoners amid pandemic

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[In the news] Workers demand new wage hikes in Calabarzon -INQUIRER.net

Members of an alliance of labor groups from Laguna and Batangas provinces held a rally outside the office of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board here on Wednesday (Feb. 26) calling for new increases in wages in the Calabarzon region.

Members of groups belonging to Workers’ Initiative for Wage Increase (Win for Win), an alliance of Southern Tagalog labor groups, gathered on the national highway at the village of Halang then marched to the wage board office a few meters away.

“It’s about time to have a significant wage increase here in the region because previous increases were just mere pennies,” said Mary Ann Castillo, 49, chair of Win for Win.

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Workers demand new wage hikes in Calabarzon

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[From the web] Enchong Dee to fellow artists: Speak up not only because our job is in peril -INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — As Enchong Dee backed ABS-CBN in its franchise ordeal, the actor called on his fellow artists to speak up and be alert not only because their job is on the line but because it’s their duty as Filipinos to fight for democracy.

“I always tell people that ‘Artists should be the first line of defense of our democracy’, people tend to agree, but most do nothing about it or get reprimanded for saying something political,” Dee said.

“Very few listen and even fewer are brave enough to stand their ground because of their ‘reputation’. Now that ABS-CBN (my home for almost 15 years) is being wrongly accused of so many things… I am angry. I am sad. I am bothered,” he added.

The actor pointed out the need for vigilance as a Filipino fighting for democracy, and not simply due to the possibility of their jobs being jeopardized.

“I am a Filipino first and my job comes second. Let’s be vigilant not only because our jobs are in peril but mainly because we are Filipinos fighting for the democracy and Constitution of our country,” Dee said.

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Enchong Dee to fellow artists: Speak up not only because our job is in peril

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[In the news] Bayan Muna, Gabriela offices in Bacolod raided by military, police — Zarate -INQUIRER.net

Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Carlos Zarate said on Thursday evening that combined forces of the police and military have raided the regional offices of Bayan Muna, Gabriela, and the National Federation of Sugar Workers (NFSW) in Bacolod, Negros Occidental.

According to information from Zarate, elements from the Philippine Army wrongly alleged that 57 persons, including 10 minors were undergoing firearms and explosive training in the offices.

“[The] Army also claims firearms and explosives seized. Unknown number also nabbed at NFSW office,” Zarate said in a message to reporters.

However, the lawmaker said this is merely a harassment of progressive groups critical of the government policies, adding that the raid was conducted at a certain time when courts are closed, as the persons apprehended cannot challenge their arrest.

“Bayan Muna strongly condemns the dastardly Gestapo-like raid still being simultaneously conducted by state forces against the offices of Bayan Muna, Gabriela and NFSW in Bacolod, Negros Occidental,” he said.

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Bayan Muna, Gabriela offices in Bacolod raided by military, police — Zarate

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[In the news] IRR for ‘Bawal Bastos’ law signed -INQUIRER.net

The implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for a new law that penalizes catcalling, wolf-whistling, sexist and homophobic slurs, unwanted sexual advances and other forms of sexual harassment in public spaces, workplaces, schools, and online were signed on Monday.

Members of the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) and the Technical Drafting Committee (TDC) led the signing of the IRR of Republic Act 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act or the “Bawal Bastos” law at the Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria in Quezon City.

According to the RA 1131, which was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last April, actions or deeds considered as gender-based street and public spaces sexual harassment are committed through unwanted and uninvited sexual actions or remarks against any person, regardless of the motive.

These acts include catcalling, wolf-whistling, unwanted invitations, misogynistic, transphobic, homophobic and sexist slurs, persistent uninvited comments or gestures on a person’s appearance; relentless requests for personal details, statement of sexual comments and suggestions; public masturbation or flashing of private parts, groping, or any unwanted advances.

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IRR for ‘Bawal Bastos’ law signed

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[In the news] HUMAN RIGHTS GROUPS: Concealing drug war film’s venue says a lot about PH atmosphere of fear -INQUIRER.net

The decision to keep secret the venue of the latest advance screening of “On the President’s Orders” says a lot about the atmosphere of fear in the country, a human rights advocate said on Wednesday night.

“Haven’t we pondered if our situation today is not normal? The fact that we have to hide, that we have to scrutinize people who would watch the documentary with us, isn’t that unusual?” said Dr. Nymia Simbulan, executive director of the nongovernment Philippine Human Rights Information Center (Philrights).

“That the government is saying that we are free, that democracy exists, but there are doubts, fears, and the conscious decision to be on guard. This proves that there is something wrong with the current government,” Simbulan told reporters gathered in Quezon City.

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Concealing drug war film’s venue says a lot about PH atmosphere of fear

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[In the news] Detained activist says she was deprived of sleep, food for up to 30 hours -INQUIRER.net

Youth activist and human rights worker Alexandrea Pacalda denied confessing to be a New People’s Army member and surrendering to the military, refuting an earlier statement made by the Army.

“I really did not surrender,” Pacalda said in a short video message sent to Inquirer by her lawyer, Maria Sol Taule. “It’s only the Armed Forces of the Philippines that is saying I surrendered. Those from the Armed Forces are the ones saying I’m an NPA who surrendered.”

“Everything I signed in the affidavit of voluntary surrender was against my will because I was not in the right state of mind because of what they did to me since Sept. 14 when I was arrested,” she said.

Taule also sent a photo of a handwritten statement which the lawyer claimed was that of Pacalda.

The statement said the writer was forced and did not volunteer to sign in surrender.

Pacalda said she was made to sign thrice an affidavit of voluntary surrender while she was not in the right state of mind. “I was deprived of sleep and food for 24 to 30 hours,” she said.

Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1166959/detained-activist-says-she-was-deprived-of-sleep-food-for-up-to-30-hours#ixzz6025dz6ph
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[In the news] 134 human rights defenders killed since Duterte assumed office — Lagman -INQUIRER.net

A hundred and thirty-four human rights defenders have been killed since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office in 2016, a lawmaker said Wednesday.

“134 killed among human rights defenders since the advent of the Duterte administration. That will not project protection of human rights defenders,” Albay 1st District Rep. Edcel Lagman said in an interview with ABS-CBN News Channel.

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134 human rights defenders killed since Duterte assumed office — Lagman

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[In the news] CIDG frees journalist, admitting ‘case of mistaken identity’ -INQUIRER.net

Valle’s full name is Fedelina Margarita Avellanosa Valle. She was mistaken for Elsa Renton — also known as Tina Maglaya and Fidelina Margarita Valle.

Renton, a suspected member of the communist movement, is the subject of a 2006 arrest warrant for arson and a 2011 arrest warrant for multiple murder with quadruple frustrated murder and damage to government property.

These details were provided by Virginia Pestañas, a member of Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP), which coordinated with the CIDG for Valle’s release.

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CIDG frees journalist, admitting ‘case of mistaken identity’

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[In the news] ‘Lumad’ takes IP struggle to Congress -INQUIRER.net

After years of struggling for the rights of indigenous peoples (IPs), Manobo tribeswoman Eufemia Cullamat from Surigao del Sur finally leveled up her advocacy with a seat in the House of Representatives.

“I will pledge my life for our struggle and bring it to Congress,” said Cullamat, a native of Lianga town, after she took her oath of office before Surigao City Vice Mayor Alfonso Casurra on June 3.

Cullamat is the second Manobo to serve in Congress after former Cotabato Rep. Nancy Catamco, but she is the first from Surigao del Sur and the first “lumad” (IPs in Mindanao) to represent the Bayan Muna party list in Congress.

“We have prevailed, despite the circumstances that we have faced during the campaign period from the harassment and threats,” she said.

“Even if they have accused and vilified us for being supporters of communist armed groups, we stood our ground and we proved them wrong,” she added.

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[In the news] Zagu workers go on strike to protest ‘union busting, contractualization’ -INQUIRER.net

The workers of famous pearl shake chain Zagu went on strike Thursday to protest alleged “union busting and illegal contractualization.”

“The Union filed a Notice of Strike last January to address these issues, but discussions collapsed earlier this week,” the Organization of Zagu Workers – Solidarity Unions in the Philippines for Empowerment and Reforms (Organiza-Super) said in a statement.

Union Secretary Hazel Calain said that even as her group was holding dialogues with the National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB), the management was “harassing union officials and members by sending several Notices to Explain for joining union activities.”

Calain noted that around 250 employees performing core functions for the company such as machine operators and service crew are “contracted out from three different service cooperatives and manpower agencies.”

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[In the news] Ex-street kid to public: We can change too -INQUIRER.net

A former street “rugby boy” has asked the public to stop stereotyping street children and youth offenders as criminals, instead give them the chance to reform saying they too can change.

“Dapat ‘yun yung makita nila hindi yung gawa lang kayo nang gawa ng batas isipin nila kung paano nila matutulungan kasi pag-inahon mo yan gagawa ba ng masama yan? Ano ang magagawa niyan? Katulad ko ngayon, ibinalik ko ang natutunan ko ngayon at ang ginawa sakin nito,” Simeon Ulanday, from children rights foundation Bahay Tuluyan, said in a press briefing in Quezon City on Thursday.

Before, Ulanday was a kid involved in drugs and crime, but now, with the assistance of Bahay Tuluyan, he helps out in non-government organizations.

“Dati akong rugby boy, solvent boy [pero] ngayon isa na po ako sa nire-respeto nila [street children] bilang kuya at nakakatanda,” Ulanday said.

“Ngayon po nagtatrabaho po ako sa Recto kapag walang pasok nagvovolunteer pa rin ako… Sa mga [non-government organizations],” he added.

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Ex-street kid to public: We can change too

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[In the news] IRR for protection of children in armed conflict signed -INQUIRER.net

The Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Special Protection for Children in Situations of Armed Conflict Act was signed Tuesday by representatives of government agencies and non-government agencies in Quezon City.

The law, signed on Jan. 10, aims to offer protection to children, who are victims of armed conflict, from all forms of abuse, violence, neglect, cruelty, discrimination and other conditions.

The measure also mandates the State to prevent the recruitment, re-recruitment or grave child rights violations against children involved in armed conflict.

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IRR for protection of children in armed conflict signed

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[In the news] Hontiveros confident 18th Congress will pass SOGIE bill -INQUIRER.net

Sen. Risa Hontiveros is confident that the incoming 18th Congress will pass the anti-discrimination bill — or the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) Bill.

“While the proposed measure will not pass in this Congress, it has gained new allies and champions,” Hontiveros said in a statement issued on Tuesday. “The concept has also become more mainstream. The tide is definitely turning. I am confident that when we refile the measure in the 18th Congress, it will finally pass.”

Hontiveros said the House of Representatives approved the bill in 2017. But the Senate version experienced delays during the period of interpellation.

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Hontiveros confident 18th Congress will pass SOGIE bill

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[In the news] Lacson wants Senator-elect Bato to look into plight of drug war victims -INQUIRER.net

Sen. Panfilo Lacson said he wants Senator-elect Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa to look into the issues of the drug war victims as he will offer the chairmanship of Senate committee on public order to the incoming senator.

“So ako naman nag-offer sa kanya [Dela Rosa], hawakan mo yung public order… e ang talagang purpose ko para lumawak ang perspective niya.. Makita mo naman yung plight na yung mga umiiyak na kamag-anak na napatay ng [Oplan] Tokhang,” Lacson, who currently chairs the committee on public order, said over AM radio station DWIZ on Saturday.

Dela Rosa, who was the former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, led the “Oplan Tokhang” anti-drug program of the Duterte administration.

Latest figures from Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and PNP showed that a total of 5,176 drug suspects were killed since President Rodrigo Duterte launched the bloody drug war in July 2016.

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Lacson wants Senator-elect Bato to look into plight of drug war victims

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[In the news] Agri, fishery groups cheer, jeer poll results -INQUIRER.net

The result of the country’s national elections, which could spell a stronger administration push for federalism and other controversial policies, drew mixed reactions from agriculture and mining groups.

Promining organizations chose to tiptoe around the poll results, while activist groups expressed dismay over the dominance of “convicted plunderers” and “political lackeys” in the winning circle of new senators.

Others gave credit to officials who managed to snag a Senate seat “through their track record.”

In an interview, Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (Sinag), one of the biggest agricultural groups in the country, said it was not looking at the individuals but rather at “profarmer legislation.”

The group however cited the reelection of Senators Cynthia Villar, Grace Poe and JV Ejercito as a win for the industry.

“They’ve proven their support [for] local agriculture,” said Sinag chair Rosendo So. “We believe the people who delivered them their success were comprised of those from the rural sector,” he added.

As for neophytes like former presidential aide Bong Go and former Philippine National Police chief Ronald dela Rosa who ranked third and fifth in the latest update of the senatorial race respectively, Sinag said they were hoping that the two men’s “campaign of being propeople would be realized.”

But activist groups Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) and Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) expressed dismay over the results of the national polls.

“We see the dominance of traditional politicians, convicted plunderers and political lackeys of the Duterte administration in the winning list of senators. This does not bode well for transformative social change,” ATM said in a statement.

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Agri, fishery groups cheer, jeer poll results

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[In the news] Desaparecidos’ families press demand for accountability -INQUIRER.net

The mother of abducted farmer-activist Jonas Burgos on Friday said the desaparecidos families’ distrust in legal measures would not stop them from demanding accountability and finding the “voice” that would represent their plight.

Edita Burgos attended with other desaparecidos’ families the Friday Mass at the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to mark the 12th year since her son was forcefully taken by alleged military intelligence agents on April 28, 2007.

“What should we do with leaders of a government who are insensitive to the least, the last and the lost? Unless we find a voice that will represent the disappeared … we with small voices will never achieve the justice we are hoping for,” a tearful Edita, now 75, said as cries to act on unresolved cases of enforced disappearances echoed inside the Bulwagang Ka Pepe at the CHR.

The Supreme Court resolved in 2013 that Jonas was a victim of enforced disappearance and that he was abducted by members of the Philippine Army from Hapag Kainan Restaurant of the Ever Gotesco Mall in Quezon City.

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Desaparecidos’ families press demand for accountability

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[In the news] Rappler’s Ressa: ‘Oust-Duterte plot’ is admin’s way to manipulate public -INQUIRER.net

“It’s bad when the government lies through its paid PR to manipulate its people.”

Rappler’s Chief Executive Officer Maria Ressa said this after Malacañang affirmed the matrix that linked journalists and media organizations to a destabilization plot against Presidente Rodrigo Duterte and his administration.

Earlier, Malacañang revealed that the “Oust-Duterte” matrix published in the Manila Times was the same information that the Palace was supposed to reveal on Monday.

Ressa, however, denied the allegation, saying it has been years since she exchanged e-mails with Ellen Tordesillas of Vera Files, who was also tagged in the alleged ouster plot.

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Rappler’s Ressa: ‘Oust-Duterte plot’ is admin’s way to manipulate public

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[In the news] Kin of Negros ‘massacre’ victim hoping for justice -INQUIRER.net

Cynthia Avelino will bury her father Ismael and uncle Edgardo Avelino on Monday morning at the Canlaon City Cemetery in Negros Oriental.

Ismael, 53, will be entombed on top of the tomb of their mother, Criscenciana, while Edgardo will be buried on top of the tomb of their brother-in-law, Joel Gallenero.

The city government gave their families P12,000 for each of their coffins.

Two days later, their remains will be subjected to an autopsy to determine and document why how they died.

But for Cynthia and her family, their will loves ones were mercilessly killed by police officer in a coordinated military-backed operation on March 30, purportedly to serve search warrants for unlicensed firearms on suspected members or supporters of the New People’s Army.

“We hope they will have justice,” Cynthia told the INQUIRER.

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