Senator Francis Pangilinan expressed dismay on Thursday that a group of human rights defenders and activists face perjury filed by a top security official of the country.
Human rights alliance Karapatan earlier slammed the revival of the perjury case filed by National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. against 10 activists since it was initially dismissed due to lack of probable cause.
Pangilinan mentioned that the Philippines is one of the most dangerous countries in the region for human rights defenders.
Pangilinan added that the amendments on the Human Security Act – which prolongs jail time and allows warantless arrests – put the lives of human rights defenders, activists, and ordinary citizens on the line for fighting for their rights.
Pangilinan appealed, “We call on the courts to be most judicious in ruling on the case of the activists and to accord them due process that they deserve."