The supplemental motion calling for a probe into President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war, which was filed by human rights group Rise Up for Life and Rights before the International Criminal Court (ICC), is “doomed from the start”, Malacañang said.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the human rights group resorted to ICC because it failed to present proof of extrajudicial killings that resulted from the anti-illegal narcotics campaign.
“If Rise Up has any basis for its submission then they should have the decency to honor the memory of those who died, and file actual complaints before our courts,” Panelo said in a Palace briefing.
“Its immediate resort to the ICC, when our courts are able and willing to hear any and all cases in the country, shows that they are using the deaths to pursue its own selfish agenda,” he added.
Panelo said the human rights group relied on “trumped-up figures”, which have no factual basis and that they knew that the same allegations will not hold up in court.
He also said the Rise Up is trying to “blemish” legitimate operations of law enforcement personnel, who were only forced to protect themselves in the performance of their duty.
The Palace official tagged the human rights group as “a network of Church-based and sectoral organizations whose existence is bound by their sheer hatred and common despise against President Duterte and this administration.”
“Rise Up’s latest move is no different. It aims to embarrass President Duterte while he is busy working outside the country to promote the Philippines,” Panelo said.
“This action is foul to say the least as this runs contrary to our standard norm and behavior to be united for our leader every time the Chief Executive is in a foreign country building up the image of the country in the international stage,” he added.
Duterte was in Russia for a 5-day state visit last week.
Panelo also slammed the “noisy anti-Duterte critics and detractors” for resorting to “political theatrics and gimmickry”, which includes using the grief and loss of widows and mothers whose husbands or children had been neutralized by the anti-narcotics campaign.
He said this would, in turn, catch people’s attention with the objective of once again demonizing the President and his government.
Meanwhile, Panelo expressed confidence that Filipinos will still support the President despite this motion.
“The Filipino people are intelligent and discerning. They cannot be fooled by this cheap political propaganda,” Panelo said.
“We are confident that they will continue to solidly support the President for the remainder of his term and honor his efforts of serving and protecting them in obedience to the constitutional command,” he added. (PNA)