“The IPU is right, Sen. Trillanes should be able to perform” – JV Bautista
IPU to Senate: Let Trillanes perform duties
by Lynda Jumilla, ABS-CBN News | 01/04/2010 3:43 PM
MANILA, Philippines – An international organization of lawmakers has taken up the cudgels for detained Senator Antonio Trillanes IV who remains unable to discharge his legislative functions nearly three years after he was elected.
Trillanes said the International Parliamentary Union (IPU) has written Senate majority leader Juan Miiguel Zubiri, urging him to act on a 2008 Senate resolution allowing Trillanes to perform his Senate duties.
The IPU was referring to a resolution expressing the sense of a majority of the senators that Trillanes should be allowed to participate in sessions and other legislative functions “through remote or electronic means.”
Late last year, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile approved the budget for a videoconferencing set-up between the Senate offices and Trillanes’ detention cell in Camp Crame .
However, Trillanes said Zubiri has yet to come up with a committee report on the 2008 Senate resolution, which was supposedly needed to implement the videoconferencing project.
Trillanes said the IPU was calling on the Senate leadership to “ensure the resolution is implemented without further delay.”
The IPU said non-implementation of the resolution has prevented Trillanes from exercising his mandate meaningfully and deprived his electorate of representation in parliament.
The IPU also noted that Trillanes has been on trial and remains in detention for more than six years now, a violation of his fundamental rights based on international jurisprudence.
“The Philippines is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which enshrines fair trial guarantees and that, as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, it has pledged to uphold the highest standards of human rights,” Trillanes quoted the IPU as saying.
With 150 members, the IPU is the official international organization of the parliaments of the world’s sovereign states. It was established in 1889 and is based in Geneva, Switzerland .
In 2005, the IPU also called for the release of the so-called Batasan 5 – left-wing members of the House of Representatives – who were arrested and detained on decades-old criminal cases.
as of 01/04/2010 8:23 PM