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Rights groups slam MMDA spox for ‘drama serye’ remark on detained activist

Human rights groups slammed Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Spokesperson Celine Pialago following her “drama serye” remarks at detained activist Reina Mae Nasino who recently buried her three-month-old daughter River.  Kapatid, a support group for families and friends of political prisoners, said those who downgrade what happened to the political prisoner are only trying to “cover the government’s gross violation of human rights.”  “The story of Reina Mae Nasino and her 3-month-old child who died last week is not ‘drama-serye.’ It is a real story that exposed the countless injustices committed by the government,” it said in a statement released on Sunday.  “MMDA Chair Danny Lim, a former political prisoner himself, should have long shown the door to his spokesperson. It should be obvious by now that sensitivity cannot be taught nor proper manners and right conduct if one is empty-headed,” it added. Meanwhile, National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) President Edre Olalia was more restrained, saying they would “do the same thing if she was in Ina’s position and circumstance. “To start with, we will never ever wish this horrible tragedy and injustice to visit the Asec, her mother, her daughters, her sisters and her aunts,” he said in a Facebook post. Despite having nothing to do with traffic, Pialago felt the need to “use her voice as a Filipino” to share her two cents on Nasino’s case. “Hindi lahat ng inang nakakulong ay nakapunta sa libing ng kanyang anak. Kaya yung mga sumisimpatya kay Reina Mae Nasino, pag aralan niyo mabuti ang dahilan bakit siya nakulong at kilalanin niyong mabuti kung sino siya sa lipunan (Not all jailed mothers get to visit their children’s funeral. So all of those who sympathize with Reina Mae Nasino, study well why she was imprisoned and know who she is and what her role is in society),” she said in a Facebook post on Sunday morning. “Masyado ninyong ginagawang pang drama serye sa hapon ang paghihinagpis niya. Tigilan niyo (You are trying to make her grief like an afternoon drama serye. Stop it)!” she added. Nasino was five months pregnant with River when she was arrested in November 2019 for allegedly being found with firearms and explosives at the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan Manila Office in Tondo, Manila. Her lawyers have insisted that the pieces of evidence were planted and that the charges filed against her are trumped-up. She gave birth to River on July 1 at the Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Medical Hospital on July 1. She and her baby were returned to the Manila City Jail 48 hours later. Before this, she filed a motion before the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) to allow her to breastfeed her daughter for a year at the hospital or a prison nursery.  But Manila RTC Branch 20 Judge Marivic Balisi-Umali denied this, saying that the jail has “very limited resources” for the care of her child.  Nasino was also among 22 elderly and medically-compromised detainees who filed a motion for their compassionate release amid the pandemic on April 8 before the Supreme Court. But months later, the High Court ruled that the trial courts will be the ones to decide on their temporary release. On August 13, the activist-mother was ordered to turn her child over to her relatives.  River was admitted at the Philippine General Hospital for fever and diarrhea on September 24. She was placed in the intensive care unit on October 9 where she died a few hours later.  A few hours before her daughter died, Nasino filed a very urgent motion for furlough so she can be with her child in her dying moments. On October 13, Manila RTC Branch 47 Judge Paulino Gallegos granted her three full days from October 14 to 16 to be by her daughter’s side during the wake and burial.  But the next day, he cut Nasino’ furlough down to only six hours from 1 to 4 p.m. on October 14 and 16 after receiving opposition from the Manila City Jail. The Manila City Jail cited lack of personnel, health concerns, and a guideline stating that detainees can only be at their loved ones’ burial and wake for a maximum of three hours. For both the wake and the funeral, Nasino was clad in a full set of personal protective equipment, handcuffed, and flanked by numerous uniformed personnel.  Tensions rose during the wake after her escorts tried to pull her away twice before her time was up, eventually escorting her out with 20 minutes to spare before 4 p.m. On October 16, Marites Asis, Nasino’s mother, had to kneel and beg in front of the police to allow them to hold funeral at 11:30 a.m. The cops wanted to delay it until 1 p.m. Police also sped off with River’s hearse to the Manila North Cemetery, leaving her family behind and thwarting activists’ plan to conduct a caravan around the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals before burying her at the cemetery. Nasino’s counsels at NUPL earlier said that they will file charges against those involved in the activist’s treatment during her daughter’s wake and burial. .....»»

Category: newsSource: mb.com.ph mb.com.phOct 18th, 2020

Año orders probe of alleged BJMP violations during Nasino’s furlough

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said on Monday, Oct. 19, he has ordered an investigation over allegations that the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) committed violations in escorting political prisoner Reina Mae Nasino to the wake and burial of her dead baby River. (JANSEN ROMERO / MANILA BULLETIN) “Pinatitingnan ko rin kung meron silang violations diyan sa behavior nila para we will also apply appropriate sanctions (I have ordered a look into their behavior so we can apply the appropriate sanctions),” he said during an interview over CNN Philippines. “I already instructed the chief BJMP Director Allan Iral to look into the matter and to see if there (were) lapses committed by the BJMP officers,” added Año. On the other hand, Año expressed support to the personal statement made by Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) spokesperson Assistant Secretary Celine Pialago who said that the alleged cruelty committed against Nasino during her visit to the wake and burial should not be sensationalized anymore considering that not all persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) are granted furlough. “Tama yun. Hindi lahat pinapayagan (She’s right. Not all PDLs are granted furlough),” Ano said. “So that’s one big privilege talaga sa PDL, hindi lahat napagbibigyan ng ganyan (Furlough is one big privilege to PDL, not all PDLs are granted that),” he pointed out. The secretary explained that being a PDL “hanggang hindi natatapos ang kaso mo deprived of liberty ka kasama na ang ibang karapatan mo diyan sapagkat nahaharap ka sa kaso (until all you cases are done, you are deprived of liberty as well as you other rights because you are facing charges). He said that Nasino has been ordered detained by a Manila court due to non-bailable charges of illegal possession of explosives and firearms. With this, Año believes that BJMP officers and personnel who escorted Nasino to wake and burial of her baby were just doing their job. “Just the same we regret what happened but I will stand by my people, the BJMP. They are professional people. They don’t have personal or vested interests. They are just doing their job professionally,” he stated. He reminded that the BJMP was only ensuring that the court’s order was being followed, which included not allowing the PDL to escape, that she will not be harmed, and she is safely returned to detention. Año defended the decision of the BJMP to keep Nasino surrounded with security personnel and keep her handcuffed during the wake and burial. “Yan talaga kasi yung standard (That’s the standard),” he stressed. If Nasino had managed to escape because the security detail assigned to her did not follow regulations, Año said these BJMP officers would face sanctions. “It was supposed to be a solemn occasion and you know we also sympathize and condole with the family of Nasino. Pero hindi siya naging solemn kasi dinumog ng tao, dinumog ng media (But it did not become solemn because of the crowds and media),” lamented Año who noted that the BJMP officers were outnumbered by the number of people at the wake and burial. Año observed that the BJMP officers “assigned to escort Nasino were insulted, harassed and verbally abused by these leftist groups aligned with Ms. Nasino.” The secretary explained that BJMP officers were also doing their job in preventing Nasino from being interviewed by the media since this is part of the regulations. “Yung interview hindi siya pwede sa mga PDL (PDL interviews are not allowed). It’s a big, big violation of the regulations,” he stressed......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 19th, 2020

Jailed activist sues 23 Manila cops for ‘maltreatment’

Detained human rights activist Reina Mae Nasino yesterday filed criminal and administrative complaints against former Manila Police District director Brig. Gen. Rolando Miranda and 22 other MPD officials for what she described as security overkill during the burial of her three-month-old daughter last October......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 2nd, 2020

Rights groups urge release of ‘red-tagged’ Gabriela official detained in Cordillera

Rights groups are calling for the release of a detained indigenous woman human rights defender and Gabriela Cordillera council member who they say has long been red-tagged by the country's security forces. .....»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 27th, 2020

Opposition solons chide General Parlade on red-tagging

Opposition lawmakers chided Thursday Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade, a staunch anti-communist military official, for allegedly red-tagging actress Liza Soberano after appearing in a webinar against gender-based exploitation and sexual harassment. Parlade commented on Soberano when she appeared in the webinar sponsored by Gabriela Youth. Deputy Minority Leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate said Parlade has been “red-tagging anyone who works or espousing the same cause and issues of progressive groups.” “Anybody and everybody should speak out against abuse and not let them be until they are extinguished,” said Zarate. He chided Parlade for allegedly assuming that “celebrities, the youth, women, urban poor, lumad and rural folk are ignorant or even stupid, to stand up for their rights and beliefs on their own.” In a separate statement, Gabriela Partylist Rep. Arlene Brosas finds it “starkly ironic” for Parlade to appeal to stop red-tagging Soberano when it was the military official who actually made the accusation. “By saying that Soberano is “not yet an NPA,” he is maliciously associating the actress with the armed movement when what she did in the youth forum was only to speak up for all the victims of gender-based violence and abuse,” said Brosas. She stated: “It is clear that Parlade, the NTF-ELCAC and the paid trolls are the ones who are rabidly red-tagging Liza Soberano and other female celebrities and influencers who are taking a stand and speaking out against the macho-fascism under the Duterte regime.” Reacting to the statements of the Makabayan solons and Senator Risa Hontiveros, Parlade said it is “government’s job to expose this duplicitous nature of the CPP (Communist Party of the Philippines). “But we differ in the way Gabriela exploits these genuine advocates, because the CPP’s underground MAKIBAKA, is the one stirring and orchestrating it,” said the general. He described the CPP as a monster that “knows no friend.” “They will feed you to the lion’s den if you are not careful. This is what happened to Jo Lapira, Ren Manalo, Camille Manangan etc., Gabriela Youth who were all killed for ceasing to be a plain activist and ended up being with the terrorist,” Parlade noted. .....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 22nd, 2020

MMDA won& rsquo;t punish Pialago

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority is not acting against its spokesperson and assistant secretary Pircelyn Pialago who came under fire for the statement she posted on social media on the plight of detained activist Reina Mae Nasino and her daughter, River, who died at 3 months old......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsOct 19th, 2020

MMDA’s Pialago apologizes for comment on activist

Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) spokesperson Celine Pialago apologized yesterday after drawing criticism over the weekend for her remarks on the plight of detained activist Reina Mae Nasino, whose three-month-old daughter died in a public hospital in Manila on Oct. 9......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 19th, 2020

Jailed activist asks court permission to visit baby’s wake

Detained human rights activist Reina Mae Nasino yesterday asked a Manila court to allow her to attend the wake and burial of her three-month-old baby who died of pneumonia last week......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 13th, 2020

After one year, youth activist and rights defender Alexa Pacalda still detained

Human rights watchdog Karapatan noted that the military threatened to file a criminal case against Alexa Pacalda if they did not sign an affidavit. Her father Arnulfo was coerced into signing and convinced his daughter to do so as well, “fearful of what the military could do to [her].” The post After one year, youth activist and rights defender Alexa Pacalda still detained appeared first on Bulatlat......»»

Category: newsSource:  bulatlatRelated NewsSep 15th, 2020

SC urged to resolve pleas on amparo, habeas corpus writs

Human rights groups led by Karapatan on Tuesday prodded the Supreme Court to immediately resolve its petition seeking a reversal of the Court of Appeals decision that denied their petition for the issuance of the writs of amparo and habeas against government officials led by President Rodrigo Duterte, in light of the recent killing of community health work and political activist Zara Alvarez......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 1st, 2020

Church, Moro groups in Region 10 slam Anti-Terror Law

Various groups in Northern Mindanao expressed strong opposition to the Anti-Terrorism Act 2020 which they said will trample human rights as the country grapples on the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic......»»

Category: newsSource:  davaotodayRelated NewsJul 7th, 2020

Palace defends, critics slam new Terror Law

They followed the same line. Only terrorists should fear or feel threatened by President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent signing of the controversial Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque echoed the remark of National Security Adviser (NSA) Hermogenes Esperon on Monday, but it sent various groups to question the new law before the Supreme Court. […] The post Palace defends, critics slam new Terror Law appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 6th, 2020

DILG backs UE campus journalist on free speech, hits activist groups that supported him

"The DILG supports the rights of Filipinos to free expression, that’s a fundamental human right that is protected by the Constitution," Undersecretary Malaya said......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 8th, 2020

Rights groups slam PROCOR Chief’s kill order against “communist organizers”

2 MIN READ Human rights groups condemned the chief of the Cordillera police for his kill order against communist organizers, stressing the directive itself violates human rights. The post Rights groups slam PROCOR Chief’s kill order against “communist organizers” appeared first on Northern Dispatch......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 7th, 2020

Over 100 groups voice support for rights activist vs threats

A solidarity statement for Palabay has collected at least 114 endorsements from organizations in Asia, Africa, Australia. Europe, North America and South America......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 30th, 2020

Iran women attend FIFA soccer game for first time in decades

By Amir Vahda and Mehdi Fattahi, Associated Press TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — They had to sit well apart from the men, and the stadium was practically empty, but thousands of Iranian women in merry jester hats and face paint blew horns and cheered Thursday at the first FIFA soccer match they were allowed to freely attend in decades. In what many considered a victory in a decades-long fight by women in Iran to attend sporting events, they wrapped themselves in the country's vibrant red, green and white colors and watched with excitement as Iran thrashed Cambodia 14-0 in a 2022 World Cup qualifier at Tehran's Azadi, or Freedom, Stadium. "We are so happy that finally we got the chance to go to the stadium. It's an extraordinary feeling," said Zahra Pashaei, a 29-year-old nurse who has only known soccer games from television. "At least for me, 22 or 23 years of longing and regret lies behind this." As one woman shouted from a passing minibus before the match: "We are here finally!" So far, Iran's hard-line Islamic theocracy is not willing to go as far some women would like. Authorities announced they will allow women to attend only international soccer matches. Women have been banned from many sporting events in Iran since 1981, during the early years of the country's Islamic Revolution. Iran is the world's last nation to bar women from soccer matches. Saudi Arabia recently began letting women see games. Under pressure from FIFA, Iran let a carefully controlled number of women into the stadium, allocating them 4,000 tickets in a venue that seats about 80,000 people, and arranged for 150 female security personnel in black chadors to watch them. They sat at least 200 meters (yards) from the few thousand men at the match. Iranian state television, which long has been controlled by hard-liners, aired footage of women cheering, and commentators even acknowledged their presence. "There can be no stopping or turning back now," FIFA President Gianni Infantino said in a statement. "History teaches us that progress comes in stages, and this is just the beginning of a journey." Iran faced a potential ban from FIFA international matches if it didn't allow women into the game. The pressure from FIFA and Iran's soccer-loving public has grown since September, when an Iranian woman detained for dressing as a man to sneak into a match set herself on fire and died upon learning she could get six months in prison. The self-immolation of 29-year-old Sahar Khodayari, who became known as the "Blue Girl" for her love of the Iranian team Esteghlal, whose uniforms are blue, shocked Iranian officials and the public. At the match Thursday, a reporter with Iran's state-run IRNA news agency posted a video online of chador-wearing officers trying to grab a woman she said had a sign in Khodayari's honor. The crowd could be heard chanting, "Let her go!" The reporter wrote on Twitter that the woman slipped away from officers and ran off. Hard-liners and traditional Shiite clerics, citing their interpretation of Islamic law, believe in segregating men and women at public events, as well as keeping women out of men's sporting events. The effort to allow women back into stadiums has gone through fits and starts. In 2006, then-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said he wanted women to attend matches to "improve soccer-watching manners and promote a healthy atmosphere." However, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has final say on all matters of state, opposed the decision. Then, last year, Iranian authorities allowed a select group of women into Azadi Stadium by invitation only to watch the Asian Champion League final. Infantino said that "FIFA now looks more than ever toward a future when ALL girls and women wishing to attend football matches in Iran will be free to do so, and in a safe environment." Activist groups outside of Iran remain suspicious of Tehran. Amnesty International called the latest decision "a cynical publicity stunt by the authorities intended to whitewash their image." "Instead of taking half-hearted steps to address their discriminatory treatment of women who want to watch football, the Iranian authorities should lift all restrictions on women attending football matches, including domestic league games, across the country," said Philip Luther, Amnesty's Middle East and North Africa research and advocacy director. Still, many in Iran embraced the move, like shopkeeper Amir Ali Bagheri, who sold Pashaei a Team Melli jersey ahead of the match. Women "are so excited they are going to the stadium," he said. "God willing, there will be freedom sooner so that they can attend all matches, not just the national team matches. That will be much better." After the match, Pashaei said she hoped authorities would open up more matches to women so she could attend them with her family. "The 'Blue Girl' and her stories did help. Of course, efforts by women activists and feminists were very effective," she said. "We are happy anyway and hope this will continue, not just in national team matches." ___ Associated Press writer Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 11th, 2019

Philippines in UN list of anti-civil society, activist countries

The Philippines, whose relations with international bodies have turned sour, has been listed among 48 countries that registered a rising retaliation against civil society groups and human rights defenders who have been cooperating with the United Nations......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 23rd, 2019

Karapatan: Perjury rap vs activist groups an attempt to silence critics

A perjury complaint against organizations tagged by state agencies as fronts of communist rebels shows that the government is determined to suppress its critics, a rights group also accused of being a rebel front, said......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJul 4th, 2019

Labor coalition fights back, says gov t must investigate and condemn worker killings

In a show of force, labor unions and rights groups on Thursday called on the government go beyond investigation and categorically condemn continuing attacks on their members and on Filipino workers......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 1st, 2021

On 18th birthday, detained Lumad student in Cebu barred from getting cake from child rights activists

As President Rodrigo Duterte feasted during his “humble” birthday celebration yesterday, a detained Lumad student was deprived of celebrating her 18th birthday with family and supporters in a social welfare facility in Cebu City. The post On 18th birthday, detained Lumad student in Cebu barred from getting cake from child rights activists appeared first on Bulatlat......»»

Category: newsSource:  bulatlatRelated NewsMar 29th, 2021

Groups welcome bill to penalize red-tagging

“While a law penalizing red-tagging is welcome, the draconian Anti-Terrorism Act violates our basic human rights, including the right to a free press.” The post Groups welcome bill to penalize red-tagging appeared first on Bulatlat......»»

Category: newsSource:  bulatlatRelated NewsMar 25th, 2021