Youth groups in Ilocos slammed an official of the Philippine Information Agency Region 1 and members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) for red-tagging organizations and party-lists groups critical to the government.
The Commission on Human Rights head in the Cordillera expressed alarm over the “thinning democratic space” aggravated by the institutionalized red-tagging of human rights defenders by the government.
Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan, who chairs the Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC) reminded the military during the 2nd Quarter joint meeting of the Regional Development Council-Regional Peace and Order Council (RDC-RPOC) to be careful in branding organizations and advocates of peoples’ rights as communist fronts.
Ronalyn V. Olea is the managing editor of Bulatlat, Philippines’ top alternative online news site. Bulatlat covers politics, human rights, indigenous people and Filipino culture from a critical angle towards the regime of President Rodrigo Duterte. That position has labeled them “enemy of the state” by the Army. In collaboration with other targeted organizations, and supported by the forensic investigation of Qurium, Bulatlat filed a lawsuit against Suniway, the Philippine company who’s infrastructure enabled the cyber attacks.
In a press conference on April 4, the dean of the University of the Cordilleras College of Nursing Judith Magwilang together with officials of the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) asserted that nurses or anybody for that matter, fighting for just wages and stable jobs and advocating peace do not deserve to be vilified nor be associated with any armed groups.
Despite the intensified threats, red-tagging and vilification against progressive groups and activists, youth groups in Baguio City are not deterred, and are finding ways to fight back.
Kabataan pary-list urged the Commission on Election and the Commission on Human Rights in Region 1 for a dialogue on the red-tagging incidents against them perpetrated by the Philippine National Police.