Malacañang shrugs off ‘guilty’ verdict of International People’s Tribunal vs Duterte
admin • September 20, 2018 • 3044
The panel of the International People’s Tribunal | Image grabbed from the Facebook page of International Peoples’ Tribunal PH
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang shrugged off the guilty verdict handed to President Rodrigo Duterte by the International People’s Tribunal (IPT) on charges of human rights violations.
According to presidential spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque, the said tribunal which recently convened in Brussels, Belgium, is propaganda body comprised of left-leaning groups.
“That’s a sham decision. It has no official sanction. The validity of the findings will depend on the credibility of the tribunals. They appear to be a propaganda body of the international left, and therefore we set it aside as a useless piece of propaganda against the government,” said Roque.
IPT 2018 convened this week to hear cases filed against Duterte on his alleged violations against political, civil, economic, social rights, international humanitarian law and others.
The IPT findings will reportedly be submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), European Parliament and International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague.
“We heard the summary of testimonies of witnesses — many of them heart-wrenching, traumatic and horrific- experts and resource persons as well as the digest of wealth of data, information, facts, and other evidence. It is our consensus therefore, the defendants Duterte, trump and all other defendants are guilty of all the charges specified in the indictment and therefore they are accountable for crimes against humanity,” said the jury.
The National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) said the International People’s Tribunal is initiated by the people to seek redress when traditional institutions are either limited or skewed.
NUPL President Edre Olalia also said in a statement that the IPT is a unique arena or platform for the urgent process of establishing the truth.
He also stood firm that IPT observes due process and defendants are notified and given the opportunity to participate and defend themselves.
Olalia added that IPT’s panel is composed of eminent jurors from different disciplines and the proceedings are conducted in an open and public trial. — Rosalie Coz
MANILA, Philippines – Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has lauded President Rodrigo Duterte’s move to require foreign vessels to first secure a clearance from the government before entering the Philippine waters.
“That is a very good development. At least now we have some authority to enforce our laws within our territorial waters,” Lorenzana said Tuesday.
Earlier, Duterte, through spokesman Salvador Panelo, issued a directive for all foreign vessels to provide notification and get clearance from proper government authority in advance of the actual passage. He also warned foreign vessels that Manila will either get compliance in a friendly manner or enforce it in an unfriendly manner.
When asked to elaborate, Panelo explained that by saying ‘unfriendly,’ it means blocking entry to any foreign vessels intruding in the Philippine territory.
He, however, clarified that the President’s order didn’t mean an automatic use of force against intruders.
“By that it means that we will ask them to move out of the place, that’s unfriendly, because before we never said anything, we just allow them, we just make protest, but this time, we will tell them, please get out of our territorial waters,” Panelo said.
Lorenzana, for his part, could not say yet the “unfriendly option” the Philippine Military could use to ward of intruders into the country’s waters. The Defense chief said he will defer the matter to the Philippine Navy. (RRD with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday hailed the sacrifice and the important role that the late former Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. played in restoring the country’s democracy as the nation marks his 36th death anniversary.
In his message, Duterte said Aquino’s sacrifice altered the course of the nation’s history and still continues to ignite the spirt of heroism among Filipinos.
“Today, we remember Benigno S. Aquino Jr. and his important role in restoring our democratic institutions more than three decades ago. His sacrifice altered the course of our nation’s history and still continues to ignite the spirit of heroism among our people,” he said.
Aquino was a well-known opposition figure and a staunch critic of the then-President Ferdinand Marcos.
He was imprisoned for his beliefs during the Martial Law before he and his family moved to the United States in 1980 to seek medical treatment which eventually led to his self-imposed exile for three years.
Upon returning to the Philippines on August 21, 1983, he was shot and killed at the then Manila International Airport (now named after him) as he was escorted off the airplane.
Ninoy’s death led to protests that sparked snap presidential elections in 1986, which led to the 1986 EDSA Revolution that catapulted his wife, Cory Aquino to presidency.
Duterte also expressed hope that this “auspicious occasion” may remind us of what we had lost “so that we may remain committed to our solemn duty to safeguard the freedoms that we now enjoy.”
“I also hope that Ninoy’s remarkable life as a public servant will move my fellow government workers to serve with honor, integrity and purpose as well as inspire our youth to be of service to their country and fellowmen,” he added.
Duterte also acknowledged that even halfway into his six-year term, there is still much that has to be done to eradicate the problems that plagued the country even during Ninoy’s time.
“Despite our gains in these past three years, there is still a lot that needs to be done if we are to completely eradicate the poverty, corruption and injustice that had plagued our nation even during Ninoy’s time,” he said.
“Let his example guide us as we strive to uplift and protect the most vulnerable in our society and ensure that all Filipinos will enjoy the blessings of freedom, democracy and the rule of law,” he added.
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