Press Release
March 24, 2021


I would like to manifest my intent to be co-author of PS Resolution 691, and join my colleagues in the Senate who are part of the legal community in condemning the spate of killings and acts of violence and intimidation against judges, lawyers and prosecutors in the country. Sa NGO community na kabahagi ako, ang joke na tawag sa mga paralegal na tumutulong sa mga basic sectors to assert their legal rights, ay PARANG-LEGAL. So I hope the lawyers in this body accept this expression of solidarity from this Parang-Legal.

Levity aside, lawyers and judges have a sacred duty in a democracy: to preserve the rule of law and fight for equal access to a fair legal system by all citizens. Lawyers cannot do their job under a cloud of fear and amidst sustained threats of harm and violence. Courts cannot function when their decisions are subject to the panopticon of the State, or when judges' faces are mounted on footbridges calling them communists. Every citizen's right to equal protection of the law is impaired when their advocates are felled in a pool of blood.

I urge the Executive and the uniformed forces to take heed of this resolution. To those in the legal profession who continue to champion the rights of the unheard, the under-served and the marginalized, and who live in fear of what the next day brings, know that you are seen. We see you. We stand with you.

Salamat po, Mr. President.

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