Quantcast
Latest Stories

Int’l watchdog to keep keen eye on PH rights cases

By

MANILA, Philippines—An international human rights watchdog said it would monitor the new “superbody” President Benigno Aquino III has created to investigate and monitor high-profile rights abuse cases “to see whether it results in prompt and serious action against abusers or is just more government smoke and mirrors.”

Brad Adams, Asia director of the New York-based Human Rights Watch, said government action against human rights violators “has long suffered” from a lack of political will and little cooperation among government agencies.

“The creation of the interagency committee could be aimed at addressing both those concerns, or it could be a public relations effort,” Adams said in a statement.

In an executive order he signed last week, Mr. Aquino established an interagency committee on extralegal killings, enforced disappearances, torture and other grave violations.

It will be led by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and include the defense and interior secretaries, the military and national police chiefs, among its members.

 

Criticism

The creation of the rights body came amid criticism that violations had continued under Mr. Aquino. His administration has been assailed by rights groups for supposedly failing to stop the “culture of impunity,” prosecute perpetrators of these crimes and bring them to justice since assuming office in June 2010.

Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa on Tuesday said the committee would undertake an inventory of all human rights cases pending in the courts, investigate new ones and take steps to rapidly resolve the crimes.

The body will assign special teams to investigate the cases for the identification of the perpetrators, with a special focus on “high-profile” cases perpetrated under the previous Arroyo administration.

Key case

A key unresolved case is the Nov. 23, 2009, massacre of 58 civilians and journalists allegedly by the Ampatuan clan in Maguindanao where the trial has dragged on due to legal maneuvers to delay proceedings.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said the fact that the committee is composed of key government officials should assure the families of the victims that this time the perpetrators would be brought to justice.

“It’s composed really of the highest levels in government. We are doing this in cooperation with not just members of the executive but also independent constitutional bodies like the Commission on Human Rights as observers as well as the Office of the Ombudsman,” she said.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Benigno Aquino III , Brad Adams , Human Rights , Human Rights Watch , international human rights watchdog , Maguindanao massacre

  • arao_liwanag

    The no.1 violator of human rights is the military seconded only by the police, tolerated by Noynoy because he himself committed it against the Hacienda Luista (H L)employees and workers. He sits on board of the company (H L). Not a chance. It’s just a public relation stunt to pretend that he is doing something.

  • batoph

    The Human Rights watchdogs could get started with investigating the cases of Andrew Martin Powell and his Filipina wife, Mitchell, who have been held now for over 5 months “on remand” at Angeles City Jail based on an Arrest Warrant issued by a subsequently de-frocked Judge who issued same based on a quashed Search Warrant.

    Absolutely wrong!



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

  • No noise, partying in Boracay on Good Friday
  • More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  • NATO ups military presence amid Russian threat
  • DOH issues official statement on confirmed case of MERS-CoV
  • Aquino to stay at home during Lenten holidays
  • Sports

  • Tenacious Iran frustrates Qatar to retain Asian Club volleyball crown
  • Floyd Mayweather is ESPN’s top-paid athlete
  • Pistorius trial: Judge sets 2-week adjournment
  • China, Taiwan rout foes for 3rd, 5th places in Asian Club volleyball
  • Ginebra’s new import Freeman arrives, makes PBA return vs ROS
  • Lifestyle

  • Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  • Celebrate Easter Sunday at Buddha-Bar Manila
  • Moriones feast: A slow, steady transformation
  • Weaving ‘palaspas’ a tradition kept alive in Tayabas City
  • Finalists announced for best translated books
  • Entertainment

  • Filipino rock icons to hold silent concert
  • Mommy Dionisia Pacquiao’s greatest hits
  • Deniece Cornejo posts bail—report
  • Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels US concert
  • Otaku Summer Jam 2014: Summer’s hottest J-rock/Cosplay event
  • Business

  • Russian economy hit by Ukraine turmoil
  • PSEi firms up ahead of Lenten break
  • I-Remit teams up with Lakhoo for remittances from Oman
  • Megawide nets P1.4 B in 2013
  • Longer TRO sought on rate hike
  • Technology

  • Smart phone apps and sites perfect for the Holy Week
  • Tech company: Change passwords or suffer ‘Heartbleed’
  • Filling the digital talent gap
  • SSS to shut down website for Holy Week
  • Another reason to quit social media this Holy Week: your safety
  • Opinion

  • We may never know
  • Couple of things
  • Mommy D’s magic
  • Stop bizarre and bloody Good Friday rituals
  • Holy Week taboos
  • Global Nation

  • Netizens welcome Japan’s visa-free travel plan
  • Visa-free travel by Filipinos to Japan still a proposal
  • Visa-free travel to Japan could boost tourism
  • 2 PCG men ordered arrested over Balintang Channel shooting
  • US Embassy closed on Holy Thursday, Good Friday
  • Marketplace