Gascon lauds PNP decision to stop presenting suspects to media
Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Chairman Jose Luis Martin “Chito” Gascon on Wednesday lauded the decision of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to stop “parading” crime suspects before the media. But he reminded the PNP to make good on its promise to provide the CHR with the case files of those killed under the anti-drug campaign.
Gascon said the PNP had not provided the case files, almost a year after the CHR asked then PNP chief Dir. Gen. Ronald dela Rosa to cooperate with its investigation.
“I hope the other aspects of human rights protection are guaranteed like the guarantees of due process, the execution of warrantless arrests, and their cooperation with us in the investigation of the anti-illegal drug campaign,” Gascon said in Filipino in an interview with Inquirer.net on the sidelines of the book launch of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines in Quezon City.
The curent PNP chief, Dir. Gen. Oscar D. Albayalde, ordered his men on Monday to stop presenting crime suspects to the media in accordance with a 2008 police memorandum by former police chief Dir. Gen. Jesus Versoza.
The memorandum was in reponse to the appeal of then CHR chief Leila De Lima to the PNP to stop presenting suspects to the media as it was in violation of their right to innocence.
The practice has since been abandoned. But then it was resumed under Dela Rosa.
In a press conference at Camp Crame, Albayalde said the PNP was working hard to uphold human rights, especially during police operations.
Gascon reminded the PNP, however, that it should not be selective in recognizing human rights, which should be observed all the time.
“It should not be pick and choose,” Gascon said in Filipino. “Human rights should be observed in all situations, in law enforcement, in anti-crime methods. It is important for our policemen to know the rights of their people.” /atm
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.