Last September 12, the lawmakers of the House of Representatives attempted to silence and render useless the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) by granting it only a budget of PhP1,000 for the next fiscal year. It is a glaring attack against the protection and advocacy of human rights and a blatant disregard for the protection of the inalienable dignity of the human person.
The advocacy arm for Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) of the Order of Capuchin Friars Minor condemn in the strongest possible terms the Lower House’s abuse of power and its attempt to stifle the systems of checks-and-balances enshrined in our Constitution and political system. We believe that peace can only be truly achieved if the demands for justice are met; and justice can only be truly achieved if the integrity and inalienable dignity of men, women and of creation, are recognized, respected, defended, and affirmed. Therefore, justice and peace can only be achieved if the State performs its God-willed role of fostering the development of men and women and their potential through the cultivation and empowerment of their divinely-ordained rights.
The State must be cautioned that it loses any and all credibility and claim to authority when it gravely and blatantly disregards social and individual human rights, ignores the demands of legal and social justice, and abandons the universal protection and preservation of human dignity.
We call upon you our Brothers in the Philippine Capuchin Province and all other God-fearing men and women of decency and dignity to listen very carefully to your individual and collective conscience to reverse the travesty committed by the Lower House and live up to the brilliant heritage of their great, august forebears who bravely stood up for our freedom, human rights, steadfastly built up the nation upon firm democratic principles, and valiantly upheld national sovereignty and the dignity of the Filipino even during the most trying of times.
God bless us all!
Provincial Office of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation
Capuchin Province of Our Lady of Lourdes
(Sgd) Br. Edgardo V. Dumaual, OFMCap.
(Sgd) Br. Joel E. de Jesus OFMCap.
(Sgd) Br. Alberto S. Poblete, OFMCap.
(Sgd) Br. Eugenio Juanilo P. Lopez, OFMCap.
September 15, 2017