By KIMBERLIE NGABIT-QUITASOL
National Artists Ben Cabrera and Kidlat Tahimik joined Mae “Juana Change” Paner, cultural workers, writers, journalists and students in signing of a manifesto of Artists for Human Rights at the University of the Cordilleras.
The signing came after staging Paner’s ‘Tao Po’, a play tackling the realities and social impacts of President Rodrigo Duterte’s “drug war”.
UC president Rey Dean Salvosa and other Baguio residents who watched the play also signed the manifesto.
“We are artists and cultural workers. We are citizens of this nation. We pledge to make art our weapon to uphold truth, freedom, human rights and dignity for all, at all times,” the manifesto stated.
The manifesto underscored the clear and present danger in the country with the rising number of killings, mostly of suspected drug addicts from urban poor communities. It urged artists and the people should speak up against wrongdoings and to stand by the principles of human rights and human dignity.
“Human rights must be protected, reclaimed, and upheld or give voice to the millions whose freedoms are denied”. # nordis.net