CHR calls on gov’t to ensure protection of ‘leftist’ lawyers

By: Inquirer.net February 28,2019 - 10:08 AM

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) called on the government on Thursday to ensure the protection and security of lawyers labeled as “leftists.”

“Harassment and vilification of lawyers labeled to be ‘leftists’ is another addition to the continuing trend of attack against groups that are progressive in upholding the people’s rights,” CHR Spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia said in a statement.

“We continue to denounce this and repeat our urgent plea to the government to ensure the protection and security of the members of the Union of People’s Lawyers in Mindanao (UPLM) and the National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL).”

The CHR also reminded the government that “equal protection of the law must be accorded to all” regardless of political affiliation.

“It is expedient that all steps are taken so that the injustice committed to the late Atty. Ben Ramos will not be repeated,” De Guia said.

Ramos, secretary-general of Negros Occidental chapter of the NUPL, was shot dead by men riding-in-tandem in November last year.

He was tagged as a member of the Communist Party of the Philippines in a poster that circulated in Negros Occidental in April 2018.

The CHR emphasized that “lawyers who choose to bravely fight for the poor and oppressed must be supported and protected, not threatened nor disparaged.”

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