The Commission on Human Rights on Wednesday vowed to continue expressing its dissent against the government's war on drugs as President Rodrigo Duterte vowed to take a harsher approach in his already bloody campaign in his last three years in office.
"As conscience of the government, we owe it to the people and the vulnerable sectors to act and speak up when basic rights are not respected, especially concerning the primordial right to life," CHR spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia said in a statement.
Duterte warned in his speech over the weekend that his remaining time as President would be the "most dangerous" time for people involved in the illegal drug trade.
While the CHR supports the crackdown against illegal drugs, De Guia emphasized that the commission will perform its mandate and investigate human rights abuses when it arises.
"CHR has always been steadfast in upholding its mandate to investigate cases of human rights breaches, without fear or favor, and we will continue to do so. We support the government on its policies that uphold human rights but we shall step in when the rights of the people are violated," De Guia said.
She also urged authorities to remain guided by the law, instead of using Duterte's words "to circumvent due process," when conducting anti-illegal drug operations.
"We hope that the words of the President will not be construed as a license to circumvent due process but will instead serve as a directive to firmly resolve the drug problem in accordance with Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drug Act of 2002," De Guia said. — BM, GMA News