Commission on Human Rights Chair Chito Gascon didn’t stop his emotions after he witnessed how the majority of the members of the house of the representatives only gave ₱1000 budget for his office next year.
In the photo posted by Facebook fan page VovPh, the CHR chair who seems still devastated by the decision of the congress, saw being comforted by some of the members of the house of the representatives while they’re exiting the hall.
After the heated debate whether the congress should give only ₱1000 to CHR, the motion of 1-SAGIP party-list Representative Rodante Morcoleta to reduce the agency budget to P1,000 still won the vote of the majority of the members of the congress.
With a vote of 119 in the affirmative, 32 in the negative, the house of the representative approved the ₱1000 budget for CHR, it means that if the President approved the budget, it’s almost impossible to the office of Chito Gascon to function or even pay for monthly bills.
“You are supposed to investigate all human rights violations irrespective of any group, any location whether they are soldiers, policemen, NPA, members of the Maute group. There shouldn’t be a selective application. You can condemn but that is not the function of the CHR,” Marcoleta said.
But Buhay party-list Representative Lito Atienza registered their opposition to Marcoleta’s motion.
“Kapag in-abolish ito ngayon, wala nang pupuntahan ang ating bansa,” Atienza said.
Atienza even suggested a higher budget for CHR and the congress should give the office ₱2-B budget for 2018.
Since last year, the Commission on Human Rights slammed President Rodrigo duterte’s war against illegal drugs which they believed became the reason of many human rights violation in the Philippines.
In reply, President Rodrigo duterte threatened to abolish the CHR as he continued defending the cops who only doing their duty in fighting criminality.
“And when the time comes, ‘yung CHR, ‘yung opisina dito, you are better abolished,” duterte said during a press conference on July.
House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez also led the idea to give zero budget to CHR for 2018.
“Kung ako ang tatanungin ninyo e, zero kapag ganyan ang performance. Bakit? Hindi natin ia-abolish kasi constitutional budget, eh di wag mong bigyan ng budget yan,” he said.
But he later clarified that he wanted to allocate a budget for CHR, but only ₱1000.
“Gusto ko malinaw ‘to. Hindi naman zero. P1,000. Kasi hindi nila ginagawa ‘yung trabaho nila,” Alvarez said in an interview with CNN Philippines’
Alvarez added, “Kung gusto mo protektahan yung rights ng mga kriminal, eh kumuha ka ng budget doon sa mga kriminal.”
Meanwhile, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial Executions Dr. Agnes Callamard slammed the House of Representatives for only giving 20USD budget for CHR.
She described the move by the house as “reprehensible and unconscionable.”
— Agnes Callamard (@AgnesCallamard) September 12, 2017
The CHR is not yet giving their official statement on this issue.
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