Press Release
July 19, 2018


Senator Richard J. Gordon, chairman of the Committee on Justice and Human Rights, yesterday said the Philippine National Police (PNP) should concentrate on solving cases without identifying suspects as members of a religious sect, when the religious group has nothing to do with the crime.

"Membership of an accused in a religious organization has nothing to do with the commission of a crime. Such labelling violates the constitutional right to free exercise of religion and could bring disrepute to the religious organization," he said.

Gordon issued the statement after some of his constituents complained about law enforcers,' particularly the PNP, of parading mere suspects before the public and announcing that they belong to a religious sect.

"Ilan sa ating mga kababayan ay nagpoprotesta ukol sa hindi magandang pagtrato sa mga suspek ng ilan sa ating mga kapulisan. This leads to unnecessary divisiveness in our society. For example, a suspected bomber in Zamboanga City was labelled 'Muslim type,'" he said.

The senator stressed that this discriminates against a person on account of his religious belief. Law enforcers should just solve the case without unnecessary labelling that can hurt others.

"This partakes of religious profiling, racial profiling, which is completely unacceptable and illegal," he pointed out.

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