SC oral arguments: Anti-RH law groups rebuked over abortifacient issue


Associate Justice Marvic Leonen to anti-RH groups: ‘Where is the certification of the FDA?’ INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio told anti-RH law advocates that they should have gone to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to test contraceptives for abortifacient instead of going straight to the Supreme Court.

“Where is the certification of the FDA? You should have gone first to the FDA and test [the contraceptives]. After you have gone to FDA, if you disagree, you come here but not now…You are jumping the gun,” Carpio said Tuesday during the oral argument.

Carpio’s point echoed that of Associate Justices Mariano Del Castillo and Marvic Leonen that the anti-RH advocates should not generalize but instead identify the abortifacient and put them to test.

Leonen pointed that “if we are to take a factual position that all contraceptives are abortifacient, don’t you think that it is irresponsible on our part?”

Anti-RH petitioners said that the intra-uterine devices and hormonal contraceptives have an abortifacient nature. Abortifacient substances induce abortion.

Leonen suggested that petitioners should look for a product, take it to FDA and have it tested for abortifacient.

Carpio added that if the petitioners are asking the high court to decide on the abortive capabilities of IUDs, “then you are admitting that you came to this court prematurely.”

He said the high court does not receive evidence.

“We are not doctors, we are not technologist here and you want us to accept evidence directly,” Carpio said.

Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno told petitioners not to make premature conclusions before the high court.

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