Lacson junks UN meddling

Drug war probe an insult to PH; Gov’t urged to hold own inquiry

The government should come up with its own comprehensive report on its war on drugs, but not allow the United Nations to conduct its own fact-finding activities here as this would be an insult to the Philippines, Senator Panfilo Lacson said Sunday.

Lacson, an administration ally, issued the statement after the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) voted to adopt a resolution proposed by Iceland to mandate the High Commissioner to provide a comprehensive report into human rights violations in the Philippines.

In an interview on radio dzBB, Lacson said the government could instead furnish the member-states a report on what transpires in the war on drugs.

READ: UN flummoxed by PH reaction

“We can make a comprehensive report on the actual low-down [on] what happened to our drug war and we can give them [that],” he said.

He also said the Iceland resolution had not even managed to gain support from a majority of the UNHRC members, as only 18 voted for it, while 14 rejected it and 15 abstained.

Lacson said the pressure on the Philippines would have been stronger had the resolution been adopted overwhelmingly.

“But out of 47, only 18 signed… So the pressure is not that strong. We can show that we can manage whatever abuses sere committed,” he said.

Lacson said any agency in the executive branch can prepare the report, so long as it is based on facts and figures alone.

To rule out bias, he said, the Commission on Human Rights could prepare the report.

The resolution approved last week calls on the UN Human Rights Commissioner to submit a report on its investigation into the Philippine war on drugs, and urges the country to cooperate on the probe.

READ: Rody slams Iceland, UN reso

At the same time, it also enjoins the Philippines to prevent cases of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances.

The CHR on Sunday said the UNHRC resolution could not be considered politically motivated.

In an interview with Dobl B sa News TV, the agency’s spokesman, Jacqueline Anne de Guia said the resolution was part of the council’s normal work, noting that the commission had already visited 58 countries on fact-finding missions in 2018.

The resolution, she added, only directs the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to submit a comprehensive monitoring report.

“This is not an investigation per se, unlike a fact-finding mission of commission of inquiry,” she said.

Catholic bishops, meanwhile, said the government should take the opportunity to clear up issues surrounding President Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody war on drugs.

“I think this the opportunity for the government... to clarify issues and to instill in the minds of the Filipino that there are no violations of human rights happening,” said Rev. Fr. Jerome Secillano, executive secretary of Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) committee on public affairs.

READ: UN Rights Council adopts reso on PH drug war

Topics: War on drugs , Panfilo Lacson , Rodrigo Duterte , Jacqueline Anne de Guia , United Nations Human Rights Council , Iceland , Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines
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