MANILA, June 23, 2011â€” A Catholic bishop called on President Benigno Aquino to intervene into the issue of forced disappearances of activists allegedly perpetrated by the military.
As a commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Tagbilaran Bishop Leonardo Medroso said Aquino should step into the issue involving his men.
Aside from the abductions of the activists, he said that the government must have the political will to resolve the extrajudicial killings in the country.
â€œKailangan na nang intervention ng Presidente natin sa isyung ito kasi na involve na naman dito ang military,â€ Medroso said over Catholic Church-run Radyo Veritas.
He said the issue is affecting the AFPâ€™s image, which was tainted by the recent exposes on the so-called send off system wherein outgoing AFP chiefs of staff are given millions of pesos in cash when they retire.
â€œThe President should act now! Pag hindi ito tinugunan ng pangulo magkakaroon ito ng implications sa taoâ€¦ sasabihin ng tao na walang political will si PNoy na sugpuin ang injustices sa bansa gaya na lamang ng extrajudicial killings,â€ he said.
New York-based Human Rights Watch earlier said it has not seen the Aquino administration taking enough steps to hold perpetrators of human rights abuses accountable.
Elaine Pearson, deputy Asia director of Human Rights Watch, the Philippines â€œshould take meaningful steps to protect human rights and promote accountability at homeâ€ as a new member of the UN Council.
HRW urged Aquino to investigate and prosecute officials, military personnel, and police officers implicated in extra-judicial killings, enforced disappearances, and other serious rights abuses. [CBCPNews]