SC orders gov’t to explain why Leyte Rep. Veloso is on narcolist
MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) has granted a Leyte politician’s bid for protection through a writ of habeas data and ordered several government agencies to respond.
In a resolution made public Friday but dated June 17, the high court ordered the government to explain the inclusion of Leyte 3rd district Rep. Vicente S. E. Veloso on the “narcolist” that was revealed by President Duterte last March 14.
The high court also referred the case of Veloso to the Court of Appeals (CA) for hearing and resolution.
Veloso sought the “rectification, suppression or destruction of the database, information or files kept by respondents which erroneously lists herein petitioner (Veloso) as an alleged “Narcopolitician” as read to the media by President Rodrigo Duterte from a list in the evening of March 14, 2019.”
Named respondents in Veloso’s petition were Salvador C. Medialdea, both in his capacity as Executive Secretary and in representation of President Duterte, Philippines Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Aaron N. Aquino, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Oscar M. Albayalde, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief Benjamin R. Madrigal, Jr., National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) Director General Alex Paul L. Monteguado, and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo M. Año.
A writ of habeas data is a remedy available to any person whose right to privacy in life, liberty or security has been violated or under threat by the unlawful gathering of information about the person, his or her family and home.
The high court required the appeals court to conduct a summary hearing within 10 days from receipt of the resolution.
It also directed the respondents to file a verified written return of the writ (answer) together with supporting affidavits.
The appeals were ordered to resolve on the petition within 10 days from the submission of the case for resolution.
The “narcolist” was announced by the President during the Joint National Peace and Order Council (NPOC) – Regional Peace Order Council (RPOC) Clusters Meeting and PNP- Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) command conference in Davao City last March 14./ac
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