Press Release
October 22, 2018

Statement of Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon House Speaker Arroyo's plan to withdraw from IPU

House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo should mind her own and we will mind our own.

I oppose the proposal of Arroyo that we withdraw from the IPU just because this global body of parliamentarians expressed its concern over the political persecution of our fellow Senators Leila de Lima and Sorry Trillanes.

Arroyo's proposal is despairing, defeatist and will be seen by the world as a tacit admission that indeed critical lawmakers are being persecuted under the Duterte administration.

It is folly for Speaker Arroyo to suggest that the IPU should be punished for performing its mandate to protect fellow members of the legislature from abusive and over-reaching tendencies of certain officials of the executive.

I speak as a former chairman of the IPU Committee on Human Rights of Parliamentarians.

The respect for human rights, not only of Members of Parliament, but of ordinary citizens, is a basic pillar of democracy. We must all do our share to uphold civil and human rights as well as the rule of law, both here and abroad.

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