Presidentiables scared of human rights?
On Peace
Thursday, 04 February 2010 19:19


Photos by Rommel Yamzon

Presidential candidates seem to be scared to face and commit themselves to human rights and peace.  This may be a sign that another president with no human rights platform is coming to town come May 2010 election.

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) got this impression after the presidentiables snubbed the forum on human rights and peace in good governance held last January 27 in De La Salle College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB).  Only Nicanor Perlas gave his time to grace the event and share his views and answer questions from the audience of more than 600 composed of students from various universities, the religious and civil society organizations.

Last Updated on Saturday, 31 July 2010 14:20
ATM Press Release
On Mining
Thursday, 21 January 2010 16:57
21 January 2010



MANILA, Philippines – Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM), an advocacygroup and people’s movement composed of more than eighty (80) organizationsfrom mining-affected communities and civil society organizations nationwide, urgegovernment to use geohazard maps to review mining tenements and abandoned minesto prevent mining disaster.

“Recently, theDepartment of Environment of Natural Resources (DENR) has presented a Php 60million geohazard mapping study of the Philippines that identified landslideand flood prone areas in the country. This data should be maximized to strategically mitigate mining disasters– if effectively integrated in land use planning, land development,disaster-risk reduction and climate change adaptation” said Jaybee Garganera,ATM National Coordinator.

“The toplandslide prone and flood prone provinces such as Benguet, Mt. Province,Kalinga Apayao, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, etc. identified by DENR are thesame provinces which host big mine operations in the country. These geohazardareas impacted both by bad weather and mining put communities at high-risk tocatastrophe”, warns Garganera.

“Benguet hosts threebig mining operations and three abandoned mines. Last year, typhoons andlandslides did not spare mining host communities, Itogon and Mankayan in theprovince, that affected at least 50 families that had to be evacuated fromtheir homes”, said Garganera.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 January 2010 17:04
Urgent Appeal by OMCT
On Torture
Thursday, 21 January 2010 16:03

Alleged torture and ill-treatment of four members, inlcuding a minor, of an indigenous tribe, as well as of a local trader by members of the Philippines Army

Case PHL 060110/ PHL 060110.CC

Alleged torture and ill-treatment/ Death threats/ Arbitrary arrest and detention/ Fear for safety and risk of impunity

The International Secretariat of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) requests your URGENT intervention in the following situation in the Philippines.

Brief description of the situation

The International Secretariat of OMCT has been informed by the Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP), a member of OMCT SOS-Torture Network, about the detention and alleged torture and other ill-treatment of four members, including a minor, of an indigenous tribe called “Dumagat”, namely J. A.[1], 17 years old, Mr. Rolan Corpuz, 20 years old, Mr. Ricky Torres, 21 years old, and Mr. Lolit Agbayani, as well as of a local trader of Barangay Mukalapa, Mr. Edwin Buryo, around 30 years old.

According to the information received, Mr. Rolan Corpuz, Mr. Ricky Torres, Mr. Lolit Agbayani, Mr. Edwin Buryo and J. A. were detained by about ten fully-armed military personnel, alleged to be members of the Philippines Army, on 1 December 2009 at 6:00pm, in Barangay Dikapinisan. They were staying in a house of a certain “Jun”, after days of hunting nests of a rare bird in Dingalan Town, Province of Aurora.

According to the same information received, Mr. Rolan Corpuz, Mr. Ricky Torres, Mr. Lolit Agbayani, Mr. Edwin Buryo and J. A. were frisked by the military and asked to present a residence certificate. After they failed to present any identification, the military reportedly brought them to a place that the abovementioned victims identified as “Kampo” (Camp). At the said place, they claim to have been tortured and ill-treated.

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 January 2010 16:16
Indigenous Peoples Tortured during Human Rights Week, A Shameless Violation of the Anti-Torture Law (RA 9745)
On Torture
Monday, 28 December 2009 10:42

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) strongly condemns the acts of torture perpetrated by military personnel against 4 Dumagats and 1 Tagalog in Dingalan, Aurora.

It is a despicable violation of RA 9745 otherwise known as “The Anti-Torture Act”.  It is a continuing abuse of human rights that challenges the government’s political will to stop the use of torture in the Philippines and among its ranks completely by enforcing the law and putting its perpetrators before the bars of justice.

This recent commission of torture by military men shows how deeply rooted the culture of impunity is in the country.  It is a showcase of how fearless the military are in violating a non-derogable right that is not only internationally unacceptable but now punishable through the recently enacted RA 9745.

The torture of Junjun Acleto, Rolan Corpuz, Ricky Torres and Lolit Agbayani, all Dumagats and Edwin Borreo, a Tagalog, that took place from December 1 to 4, 2009 while the world was celebrating Human Rights week, is a grave affront to human rights and an insult to laws of the land. It is an addition to the Philippine government’s record of inability to protect its people.     

Or shall we say a proof of government’s lack of will and genuine concern to really stop the use of torture among its rank.

Torture was used against the five (5) victims to make them confess their alleged involvement with a rebel group (NPA).  For four days victims were physically and mentally abused after being illegally arrested. They were forced to reveal an alleged hiding place of firearms of the NPA after they were kicked and punched in different parts of their body and were manhandled for every unacceptable response and were threatened to be killed. According to the five they were also threatened to be beheaded if they would not cooperate.

RA 9745 was a product of decades of lobby and campaign to protect the people from torture which has been consistently and strongly denied by government.  Now that torture is officially a crime under Philippine law, we call on the government to act immediately and impose this law against its erring military personnel. Let this case be a test of government’s sincerity in doing away with torture.

The “Anti-Torture Act” was a real milestone for a government with a bad human rights performance but implementing it is another matter.  Justice for victims may now be available if government exercises its political will. But jailing its own abusive military personnel is alarmingly the next big question. The ball is in government’s hands and there can be no time out for torturers!

Justice for torture victims!
Enforce RA 9745!
Break impunity! Jail torturers!

December 28, 2009

Last Updated on Monday, 28 December 2009 10:47
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