Roque not surprised by opposition to ILC nomination: They do not wish anyone to succeed
MANILA, Philippines — Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday said he was not surprised when many individuals, including his fellow human rights lawyers and even officials from his alma mater, have opposed his nomination to the International Law Commission (ILC).
Roque said these individuals have the nature of not wanting anyone to succeed.
“No, because I know them, I know their nature. They don’t wish anyone to succeed so I just let them be,” Roque said in an interview over ABS CBN News Channel when asked if he was surprised by the staunch opposition to his nomination.
The Free Legal Assistance Group (FLAG), as well as the University of the Philippines Diliman Executive Committee, earlier raised objections to Roque’s nomination to be part of the United Nations experts panel on international law.
FLAG said Roque is “ill-suited” for the work of the commission as he “does not possess the qualifications” for it.
For its part, UP Diliman Executive Committee said Roque’s inclusion in the ILC would only “diminish” the reputation of the United Nations body, adding that Duterte’s mouthpiece has a “very poor track record of promoting, defending, and fulfilling rights and the rule of the law.”
On Monday, he said the criticisms against him is rooted on when he left the Left.
“They haven’t forgiven me for leaving the Left but as far as I’m concerned I’ve moved on, and everyone should move on from thinking that the government should be overthrown by encircling the countryside,” he said.
He also believed that he did not abandon his advocacy for human rights when he decided to become the mouthpiece of President Rodrigo Duterte, who is accused of crimes against humanity before the International Criminal Court.
Roque said Duterte has promoted human rights when the President certified as urgent the then Universal Health Care bill, which he authored.
He also said he is “according the people the right to freedom to information” when he became presidential spokesperson.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
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.