6 October 2010
Aquino Falls Short on Human Rights in First 100 Days
During his first 100 days in office, President Noynoy Aquino has highlighted serious human rights issues in the Philippines, but has yet to take concrete action against them.
In a briefing released today, Amnesty International issues its report card on President Aquino’s record on human rights since taking office.
“President Aquino has made thoughtful comments about human rights issues, but has failed to translate his words into action thus far,” said Dr Aurora Parong, Director of Amnesty International Philippines.
“During this honeymoon period, the President needs to tackle the legacy of serious human rights violations that he inherited upon taking office.”
Before his inauguration on 30 June, Amnesty International sent President-elect Aquino five recommendations for his first 100 days in office.
With regard to Amnesty’s first three recommendations, the President missed key opportunities to address human rights issues, but can make up for lost time by taking action now:
1. End human rights abuses by militias, paramilitaries and private armies
2. Take steps to prevent extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances;
3. Ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances.
In the last two recommendations, the Aquino administration took some steps forward:
4. Instil human rights protections in governance (by appointing a Justice Secretary with a strong commitment to human rights)
5. Protect and support people displaced by armed conflict (by renewing the Mindanao peace process and announcing aid to people who have been affected by the recent conflict ).
“In losing his father, President Aquino has personal experience of a grave human rights violation,” said Dr. Parong. “The President is now in a position where he can help protect the human rights of all Filipinos.”
Love, rage, fire and flames,
Maria Edilyd P. Orias
Media, Communication and Publications
Amnesty International Philippines