SC issues writ of amparo, protection order for two missing activists
MANILA, Philippines — The Supreme Court (SC) has issued a writ of amparo and protection order for activists Loi Magbanua and Alipio “Ador” Juat who have gone missing since May 3 on suspicion the military abducted them.
Magbanua is a women and workers’ rights advocate, while Juat is a veteran activist and martial law survivor.
The writ of Amparo is a remedy available to any person whose right to life, liberty, and security has been violated or threatened. Like a writ of habeas data, it has a preventive and curative role in curbing extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances.
In a briefer by the high court’s Public Information Office, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) was named respondent and ordered to make a verified return of the writ of amparo and file a comment on the petition filed by the relatives of the activists. The AFP’s comment should be lodged before the Court of Appeals within 72 hours upon receipt of the SC’s order.
Particularly, AFP Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro and other senior military officers, as well as retired Gen. Ricardo F. De Leon, currently officer-in-charge of the Department of National Defense, were identified as respondents in the petition.
A temporary protection order was also issued in favor of the missing activists. It prohibits the AFP from going near the petitioners and their immediate family – specifically within a radius of one kilometer. Among the petitioners were the partner of Magbanua and the daughter of Juat.
Petitioners said Magbanua and Juat were last seen on May 3, attending a meeting with fellow community organizers in Valenzuela City.
Juat was able to surface on several occasions to see his daughter, who he said was in Camp Aguinaldo.
However, his daughter said her father told them he still could not leave the military camp.
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