Opposition senators ask colleagues to ensure protection of rights
MANILA, Philippines — As the world commemorates International Human Rights Day on Monday, senators in the minority bloc pressed colleagues to take the lead in making sure people’s rights are protected.
In filing Senate Resolution No. 970, the senators called on fellow legislators to be at the forefront of upholding the values and principles enshrined in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights (UDHR) and Declaration on Human Rights Defenders.
“As one of the 48 State Parties to the UDHR, the Philippines has an obligation to respect by refraining from interfering with or curtailing the enjoyment of human rights, to protect individuals and groups against human rights abuses, and to fulfill by taking positive action to facilitate the enjoyment of basic human rights,” Senator Leila de Lima said in a statement.
The resolution was filed by De Lima, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, and Senators Bam Aquino, Risa Hontiveros, Francis Pangilinan, and Antonio Trillanes IV.
De Lima noted the UDHR was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly as “a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to be promoted by education, and, more optimistically, by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance.”
“The rights enshrined in the UDHR uphold the same basic liberties and the same freedoms provided under our Constitution, particularly in the Bill of Rights,” the senators said.
The senators also said aside from the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the UDHR, “it is also this year that world is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRDs), which provides for the support and protection of human rights defenders in the context of their work.”
Moreover, they underscored the need for their fellow senators to continue drafting legislative measures aimed at protecting the rights of the Filipino people.
“The Philippine Senate has been faithfully affirming and supporting the principles and rights provided under the two Declarations, as embodied in its legislative work and legacies throughout the years,” the senators said.
“In consonance with our state obligation towards fulfillment through positive action, the Senators of the Seventeenth Congress have been at the forefront of promoting human rights through filing, passage, and adoption of key rights-based legislative measures,” they added. /kga
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