De Lima slams ‘no credibility’ PNP for social media monitoring order
MANILA, Philippines—Senator Leila De Lima slammed the Philippine National Police for its decision to “regularly monitor” social media posts to look for alleged quarantine violators amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a dispatch coursed through Camp Crame, De Lima said that instead of looking at personal profiles why not look into the party that was set up for Manila Police Chief Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas back in May.
“Before PNP monitors social media for possible quarantine violators, why don’t they address first the mañanita that took place within their own ranks?” said De Lima Wednesday. “They should also include the several reported cases where the police themselves were found to have violated safety protocols. How can they be trusted to effectively enforce laws when they have no credibility?”
Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, the Joint Task Force COVID Shielf, warned that the police will monitor various social media platforms to search for violators of the quarantine protocols.
PNP Chief Gen. Camilo Cascolan, meanwhile, clarified that those that will be monitored are posts that are tagged as public.
This reasoning did not sit well with De Lima who feared that monitoring social media will eventually lead to worse actions.
“It becomes even more problematic because the police are making arrests based on their poor and biased assessment of the situation – not to mention the obvious disregard of human rights – including some clear issues of privacy,” said De Lima.
The detained senator added that the PNP has more urgent matters to attend to than to scour social media.
“Imbes na magbabad sa Facebook at Twitter, ang dami pang ibang puwedeng gawin ng ating kapulisan para ipatupad ang batas sa paraan na patas at makatao. Subukan naman nilang simulan ito sa kanilang mga sarili,” said De Lima.
(Instead of spending time on Facebook and Twitter, there are a lot of things the police force can do to enforce the law fairly and humanely. They should at least try to start with themselves.)
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