Philippine authorities have renewed its commitment to respect and uphold human rights following a recent forum organized by Amnesty International in Pagadian City in the southern province of Zamboanga del Sur.
PAGADIAN CITY (Mindanao Examiner / July 6, 2014) – Philippine authorities have renewed its commitment to respect and uphold human rights following a recent forum organized by Amnesty International in Pagadian City in the southern province of Zamboanga del Sur.
The forum brought together various law enforcement agencies, the police and military authorities, among others. The Philippine Army, the Philippine National Police and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology also vowed to implement fully the Anti-Torture Law.
Antonio Bayamban, Amnesty International coordinator, said the law guarantees full respect for human rights. It also ensures the human rights of all persons, including suspects; detainees and prisoners are respected at all times.
Under the law, no person placed under investigation or held in custody of any person in authority or, agent of a person authority shall be subjected to physical, psychological or mental harm, force, violence, threat or intimidation or any act that impairs free will or in any manner demeans or degrades human dignity.
It also ensures that secret detention places, solitary, incommunicado or other similar forms of detention, where torture may be carried out with impunity, are prohibited. The law fully adheres to the principles and standards on the absolute condemnation and prohibition of torture as provided for in the 1987 Philippine Constitution and various international instruments to which the Philippines is a State party.
Lt. Col. Victor Tanggawohn, Jr, of the Philippine Army, said assured troops follow the strict implementation of law and the respect of human rights of every citizen. “The Anti-Torture Law has set direction to government troops be professional soldiers,” he said, adding, the military’s Oplan Bayanihan program showed transparency and good acceptance among stakeholders where military operation was remove to address insurgency problems.
Tanggawohn they continue to educate government soldiers and incorporate human rights in the conduct of training of troops.
Among those who participated in the forum were representatives from the City Prosecutor’s Office, Public Attorney’s Office, Integrated Bar of the Philippines, and members of the media. (Jong Cadion and Ely Dumaboc)