WATCH: Groups protest visa cancellation of Dutch missionary De Vries
MANILA, Philippines — Members of groups Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) and the Ecumenical Institute for Labor Education and Research (EILER) on Wednesday flocked to the Bureau of Immigration in Manila on Wednesday to protest the cancellation of the visa of Dutch missionary Otto De Vries.
The government revoked the visa of De Vries, who has served as a labor rights advocate for more than 30 years, over his supposed links to “terrorist groups.”
“Ang panawagan namin i-reverse ang kanyang [BI] desisyon sa pagpapalayas kay Otto at kasabay niyan maglabas siya ng public statement na pagbawi sa EILER bilang affliated sa communist terrorist organization dahil nalalabag ang kanilang karapatan,” Jerome Adonis, Secretary General of KMU, said in an interview with Radyo INQUIRER.
During the protest, personnel of the Manila Police District tried to disperse the protesters as they did not have a permit to conduct a demonstration.
“Hindi pwede ang social gatherings, bawal pa po ‘yun. Wala silang permit,” MPD Police Station 5 commander Police Lt. Henry Mariano said in a separate interview.
Adonis, however, said they do not need a permit and they were compliant to basic health protocols such as wearing face masks, face shields, and observing social distancing.
“Hindi namin kailangan ng permit, ginagamit namin ‘yung karapatan namin sa pagpapahayag,” he said.
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