“Given Remulla’s atrocious track record of shameless apologia for red-tagging, human rights violations, and attacks on press freedom, we express grave concern over his impending appointment as DOJ secretary, especially when his appointment also means that he will get to sit as a member the Anti-Terrorism Council.”
By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
MANILA – Activists and victims of red-tagging do not welcome the imminent appointment of Cavite Rep. Jesus Crispin “Boying” Remulla as secretary of the Department of Justice.
Remulla is known for red-tagging activists, personalities, and supporters and attendees of Vice President Leni Robedo’s campaign rally in Cavite.
In a statement, human rights group Karapatan said it is not surprising that presumptive president Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has decided to include Remulla in his Cabinet.
“After all, Remulla has functioned as the de facto stooge of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) in Congress — rabidly red-tagging Lumad schools and even the campaign sorties of Vice President Leni Robredo — along with his role in the non-renewal of the franchise of ABS-CBN,” the group said.
The group added that they can only expect more injustices and impunity under the administration of Marcos Jr. with Remulla at the helm of the DOJ.
Remulla will also become a member of the Anti-Terrorism Council once he sits as justice secretary.
Karapatan said, “Given Remulla’s atrocious track record of shameless apologia for red-tagging, human rights violations, and attacks on press freedom, we express grave concern over his impending appointment as DOJ secretary, especially when his appointment also means that he will get to sit as a member the Anti-Terrorism Council.”
The group also raises the following questions: “What will happen now to the DOJ’s investigations in its drug war review panel? How will a rabid red-tagger like Remulla handle the cases of political killings, enforced disappearances, and torture of activists and human rights defenders under the DOJ’s Administrative Order No. 35 task force?”
Meanwhile, Kabataan Partylist first nominee and national president Raoul Manuel said that there is no justice to be expected under a justice secretary “who openly violated the rules of procedure of the House of Representatives to revoke the unanimous approval of the University of the Philippines University of the Philippines-Department of National Defense Accord Bill or House Bill 10171.”
The HB 10171 aims to institutionalize the 1989 UP-DND Accord by amending Republic Act 9500 of the UP Charter. The bill was filed after Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana terminated the agreement in January 2021. The UP-DND Accord prohibits state security forces from entering UP campuses without prior notification to the university administration.
Manuel said they will never forget that “Remulla violated the rules of Congress and moved to essentially neglect the passage of House Bill 10171.”
“Without Remulla’s power tripping, the UP-DND Accord Bill should have been passed on third and final reading, and only a few steps away from becoming a law. A politician who tramples upon the people’s will cannot be trusted to promote justice in our country,” Manuel said.
For Ana Patricia “Patreng” Non, Remulla’s appointment as justice secretary is “very uncomfortable” as her community pantry initiative was red-tagged by Remulla last year. She said it hurts that community pantry organizers are accused of being “pasikat (brag).”
“It is very disappointing that we (community) pantry organizers are being accused of just trying to get attention simply because we post (our activities). They did not even think that these posts inform the public about existing pantries so that those who are in need and the donors could easily go there. This is a movement of love and kindness all over the country but they maliciously tag those who are helping each other,” Non lamented on social media.
Meanwhile, Lean Porquia, son of slain Bayan Muna leader in Iloilo, Jory Porquia, described Remulla as “a monster and has complete disregard towards justice.”
His father was killed after he was red-tagged.