July 13, 2010
Akbayan Rep. Etta Rosales is a “seriously flawed choice” for the Commission on Human Rights chief post, labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno said today, rebutting former Rep. Risa Hontiveros’s claim that Rosales is “perfect” for the job.
“We say to Hontiveros: Rosales is a seriously flawed choice for CHR chief. Etta and her partylist Akbayan have issued statements in the past linking legal organizations who are the main targets of human rights violations to underground revolutionary organizations. That is precisely the excuse of the military for the violations,” said Roger Soluta, KMU secretary-general.
“Etta was indeed a victim of human-rights violations under the Marcos dictatorship. That, however, did not prevent her and the partylist which she leads from issuing statements against the organizations who are the main targets of human-rights violations at present. She is biased against these organizations and is far from fit for the CHR post,” added Soluta.
KMU also berated Hontiveros for saying that opposition to Rosales’s appointment stems from the fact that the Communist Party of the Philippines was “irked” by Rosales’s possible appointment, because the latter is strongly against “private armies” like the New People’s Army
“There goes Hontiveros again, red-baiting as usual. The opposition to Etta’s appointment came from legal organizations such as Karapatan, Anakbayan and KMU, not the CPP. She projects herself as smart yet she cannot distinguish between legal organizations and underground ones. She clearly has an ideological aversion to these organizations,” Soluta said.
“And why should we believe the statements of someone who calls the NPA a private army? That, again, is the military line on the NPA, which it uses to justify its all-out war against the latter – and its assassination of those it accuses of supporting the NPA. The NPA is a legitimate revolutionary organization, not another private army,” he added.
The labor leader said Hontiveros’s desperation to get Rosales appointed to the CHR blinds her from seeing the issue objectively.
“To be frank about it, the organizations that are the main targets of human-rights violations in the country do not trust Etta. The two former Akbayan representatives should at least have the delicadeza and back out from lobbying for Etta’s appointment. What word in ‘We don’t want Etta in the CHR’ don’t they understand?” asked Soluta.
“The problem, it seems, is that Akbayan is getting desperate to get a government post for its leaders as payback for its support for President Noynoy Aquino in the last elections. They are desperately pushing for Etta to the detriment of groups who should be seen as the main stakeholders in the issue,” Soluta concluded.