By ANAKBAYAN-CORDILLERA (PR)
BAGUIO CITY — Local formation of Anakbayan in Cordillera blasted the Supreme Court (SC) 10-4 ruling to approve the constitutionality of Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, saying such move means surrender of Philippine sovereignty to the United States.
“We oppose the decision of the SC since it fails to consider that the agreement violates the provision of the Philippine constitution prohibiting foreign military presence without any treaty agreed on by the Senate,” said Luke Bagangan, Secretary General of Anakbayan Cordillera.
Art. XVIII Sec. 25 of the 1987 Constitution states that foreign military bases, troops, and facilities “shall not be allowed in the Philippines except under a treaty duly concurred in by the Senate”.
Bagangan stressed that since the Aquino-backed treaty bypassed concerned government agencies, such agreement is void and unacceptable.
Following this, Anakbayan is set to conduct a series of protest actions to oppose the ruling and expose what they termed as “unfair and one sided” nature of the treaty.
Anakbayan claimed the treaty as merely a way to advance US economic military agenda in the Asia Pacific while leaving barely no benefit for the Filipino People.
“Through EDCA, we expect the return of permanent US military bases with almost no restrictions from our own government. They can stay here without rental or similar costs and we still have to pay for their supposed tax for electric and water services. They can’t even be charged for any wrongdoings and crimes they may commit during their stay here. This obviously trampled our country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” added Bagangan.
As a result, Anakbayan expects more victims of US troops-perpetrated crimes like the death of Jennifer Laude as impunity among the US military troops are guaranteed by the government.
Meanwhile, the youth group debunked the claim of the government of the supposed assistance of US in our territorial dispute with China as no such commitment are guaranteed by the treaty.
“Instead of being a deterrent to China bullying, US will just drag the country to more international conflict they are facing with other countries. Also, we will also be obligated to participate in their military actions and campaigns just like what happened in Mamasapano,” Bagangan clarified. # nordis.net