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Shades of martial law, youth group says of ‘Oplan Rody’

By: - Reporter / @erikaINQ
/ 05:38 AM June 16, 2016
A police officer conducts an inventory of different kinds of liquors they confiscated as evidence at PNP Masambong station 2 in Quezon city during raid last night for violation of city ordinance 2301.EDWIN BACASMAS

A police officer conducts an inventory of different kinds of liquors they confiscated as evidence at PNP Masambong station 2 in Quezon city during raid last night for violation of city ordinance 2301. EDWIN BACASMAS/INQUIRER

A recently formed youth organization objected on Wednesday to intensified police operations imposing a strict curfew, saying the measure was a throwback to martial law.

Policemen in Metro Manila recently rounded up minors and drunken and shirtless men under “Oplan Rody,” which stands for Rid the Streets of Drinkers and Youths. Rody is also a nickname of incoming President Rodrigo Duterte, known for his relentless anticrime stance.

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But the Samahan ng Progresibong Kabataan (Spark) said schools like the state-run Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila and Universidad de Manila have classes extending up to 9 p.m.,  while those that are ready for the K-12 education program may also be compelled to extend hours due to a classroom shortage for senior high school.

It said checking of identification papers under “Oplan Rody” are “hauntingly similar to martial law days.”

Working students in peril

The curfew also imperils working students, the group said, adding that many who are as young as 15 work late to avoid conflicts with class schedules, the group said.

“Chances of these students going beyond the curfew are also amplified with the upcoming monsoon rains and heavy flooding, add the lamentable state of the public transportation system and road networks which will contribute to the longer travel time from school,” said Spark head Joanne Lim of University of the Philippines Diliman.

Spark called for the suspension of “Oplan Rody” until authorities modify the ordinance to take into consideration modern-day realities, while also urging city councils to lay down mechanisms to ensure rights are protected.

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TAGS: Martial law, Nation, news, Rodrigo Duterte
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