PH gov’t to UN: Gloria Arroyo given due process
The Philippine government on Thursday insisted it has done nothing wrong in connection to the case of Pampanga representative and former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
Arroyo, who has been placed under hospital arrest, earlier filed a complaint before the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD).
She is represented at the UN by human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, who is also the wife of US actor George Clooney.
Arroyo’s lawyer Lorenzo Gadon told media that Clooney informed the former president that the UN WGAD had found Arroyo’s hospital detention arbitrary and violative of international law on human rights.
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr., quoting the Department of Foreign Affairs, told media in a statement, “Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has been accorded such due process and has availed herself of various legal remedies under Philippine laws.”
“It must be noted that there is an on-going judicial process in the Philippine courts, which has sole jurisdiction to decide on such matters. The Philippine government or any international body for that matter, cannot interfere nor influence the course of an independent judicial proceeding,” the statement added.
Coloma said the Philippine government had taken note of the UN working group’s opinion and “will prepare an appropriate response” in accordance to WGAD’s rules.
“The Philippines, as a signatory to the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, abides by its international obligations and ensures that all individuals are accorded due process under its laws,” he explained. Kristine Angeli Sabillo/RC
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