Duterte son seeks probe of EJKs in past 25 years

Sheila Crisostomo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte wants Congress to investigate extrajudicial killings (EJKs) and human rights abuses in the country over the past 25 years.

The son of former president Rodrigo Duterte filed House Resolution No. 1745, asking the House of Representatives to direct the appropriate committee to conduct the probe “in aid of legislation.”

Duterte said the chamber should look into the “surrounding circumstances” behind the incidents of EJKs all over the country, not only in Davao.

He cited in particular the reports of the Philippine National Police, Department of the Interior and Local Government and other related law enforcement agencies stating that the cities of Manila, Cebu and Quezon are among the areas with recorded high incidents of EJKs and human rights violations.

The lawmaker wants the probe to cover a period of not only six years, but at least 25 years up to present.

“Human rights violations, including EJK, have been a perennial threat against a significant number of Filipinos for decades already,” the resolution read.

The measure stated that “this longstanding impunity has been consistent with the annual reports on extrajudicial killings by the Human Rights Watch relating that the human rights situation in the country remains appalling, if not ascending, across varying political regimes as shown by the unabated and progressing rate of the said killings, including attacks against political activists and journalists and abuses committed during the armed conflict with the current 54-year-old communist insurgency.”

Duterte added that EJKs, a majority of which are related to illegal drugs, “have continued to peak” in 2023 during the administration of President Marcos.

The resolution stated that Congress should evaluate existing laws, rules and regulations that uphold and promote the constitutional guarantee against any form of human rights violation.

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