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NTF-ELCAC tags Human Rights Defenders Bill as “act of desperation” by Leftist lawmakers

The National Task Force To End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) on Monday debunked the true intentions of the passage by the House of Representatives of the Human Rights Defenders Bill and called the measure “an act of desperation” by Leftist lawmakers.

“The approval of Congress of the House Bill 10576 or the Human Rights Defenders Protection Act is part of the desperate move of the Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army – National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF)” through the Makabayan bloc “to save the dying insurgency,” Undersecretary Severo Catura, NTF-ELCAC spokesperson for International Affairs, Peace Process and Human Rights Concerns said.

At the Task Force’s weekly ‘virtual’ press briefing, Catura said the bill is “nothing but a propaganda” of Communist Terrorists Groups (CTGs) to allow “pretenders” of human rights defenders in Congress “to advance their deceits.”

Catura was referring to lawmakers in the House of Representatives, who are members of the so-called Makabayan Bloc, whom he accused of painting lies about the country with regards to human rights.

He explained that the bill also allows “certain organizations” “to solicit abroad” which the Makabayan Bloc have been doing in the past by masquerading as human rights defenders themselves.

There is no need for the proposed bill as the rights mentioned therein were already “embedded” in the Constitution and other laws pertaining to human rights, he pointed out.

While, Undersecretary Lorraine Marie T. Badoy, NTF-ELCAC spokesperson for Sectoral Concerns, on the other hand, said the task force “will be hell bent in ending the chapter of the CPP-NPA-NDF”.

“And so it is really hilarious that these pretend-legislators have arrogated unto themselves, through this ludicrous bill, the right to define who are and aren’t ‘human rights defenders’— a definition so porous in its broadness that even the ISIS, the Abu Sayyaf and of course, the CPP-NPA-NDF can be defined as ‘human rights defenders’,” Badoy stressed.

She added that under the supposed bill, once a person is identified as ‘human rights defender, they will be exempted from various laws of the country and from the Anti Money Laundering Council (AMLC), as “looking into financial records of a human rights defender will be a crime, once this ridiculous bill is passed into law.”

Under this bill, ‘human rights defenders’ cannot be identified as “members of the CPP-NPA-NDF” even if they are indeed members of the CPP-NPA-NDF and they will be exempt from Terrorism Financing Laws. How then can government protect the Filipino people from terrorism if we cannot stop terrorism financing or take off masks of terrorists who pretend to be ‘human rights defenders’?” Badoy explained.

National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) Director General Alex Paul Monteagudo also believe, “They will use the law to accomplish their objective. To put the government under communism (which we have been fighting for over 50 years).”

Monteagudo said members of the Makabayan Bloc took advantage of the House of Representatives clamor to pass the pending bill in time for the elections’ break, and while other members of Congress attended the sessions remotely via technologically advanced methods, the vote necessary to pass the bill was achieved.

“Hindi nga nabasa ng karamihan ‘yan, nadaan pa sa pakiusap ng mga Makabayan Bloc, (Other lawmakers did not even bothered to read the bill and was lured by Makabayan Bloc members to take an affirmative vote because of the camaraderie),” Monteagudo explained.

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