Despite the setback faced by the 43 before the Court of Appeals (when the petition for habeas corpus was denied by a vote of 3-2), the Commission on Human Rights has announced that it will pursue its own investigation into the complaints of rights abuses filed by the 43 health workers who were arrested last February 6 in Morong, Rizal.
The CHR is set to hear the complaint of the 43 health workers on March 18 at 9am. It is not yet clear if the Armed Forces of the Philippines will comply with the CHR order to present the 43 on the said date. It is also not clear if the officials summoned to attend the hearing, Gen. Jorge Segovia, Col. Aurelio Baladad, Prosecutor Senson and Judge Mangrobang will attend.
There should be no reason for them not to attend since there is ample time for them to prepare all the necessary logistics for the 43. We surely don’t want a repeat of what they did last February 12 when the AFP defied a Supreme Court order.
Let’s show our support for the 43 by joining the mass action on March 18. Let’s show the 43 that the number of advocates is growing everyday . See you at the CHR at 8am.
Next week, we also hope for some positive updates in the appeal filed by lawyers before the Court of Appeals. The CA is supposed to elevate the appeal to the Supreme Court. This should get the ball rolling in our quest to free the 43 and have the Martial Law relic known as the Ilagan doctrine forever removed from our jurisprudence.