Special Report: The Philippines’ hollow human rights system
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has been informed that the trial of Temogen “Cocoy” Tulawie, an indigenous activist who is prosecuted on evidence of forced confession, would now be heard in Manila. Temogen would be moved from a prison in Davao City to Manila; but, despite serious concern over the plot to kill him inside prison, no adequate measures have been taken to protect him.
In our previous appeal (AHRC-UAU-031-2012), we have expressed concern over the impending transfer of Temogen “Cocoy” Tulawie from Davao City, where he is detained, to Manila because of the plot that he would be killed, allegedly by hired killers once he is transferred to a prison in Manila. In our letter addressed to the Supreme Court (SC), we pointed out:
“…we are gravely concerned about the safety and security of Tulawie once his transfer is completed. We have just been informed of the plot allegedly by the complainant, Governor Tan, to kill the accused once he is transferred from Davao City to Manila. It has been alleged that the complainant had contracted notorious Abu Sayyaf suspects currently detained at Camp Bagong Diwa, Bicutan, Taguig, to carry out the murder. This plot to murder him is already known inside.”
Temogen “Cocoy” Tulawie. Photo: AHRC
However, despite the urgency in the content of the AHRC’s letter, the SC did not respond. While this plot is public knowledge there is no indication as to whether the jail officers at the Camp Bagong Diwa have taken any measures or acted in any way to ensure the security arrangement to protect the Temogen. No police investigation has been conducted to ascertain the extent of the plot to kill Temogen or the allegations against Governor Tan, the complainant, is behind the plot.
On October 4, 2012, the Regional Trial Court, Branch 11, in Davao City, proceeded in sending the record of the case of Temogen to Manila. The transfer of the court records was in accordance with the order of the Supreme Court (SC).
On October 16, 2012, the Office of the Clerk of Court (OCC) in Manila confirmed receipt of the case folders and scheduled to raffle the case. The raffle was to ascertain which court branch would take jurisdiction to hear the fabricated charges on Temogen.
On November 8, the victim’s wife, their legal counsel and also those who supported her husband’s case, attended the raffling of the case. The AHRC also sent its local representative. The case is now under the jurisdiction of Judge Marlo A. Magdoza-Malagar of the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 19, Manila City.
Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission (email@example.com)
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