LP says SEC, like Marcos, resorted to ‘unacceptable legalism’ to justify Rappler shutdown

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MANILA, Philippines — The Liberal Party called the Securities and Exchange Commission’s decision to cancel news site Rappler’s registration “unacceptable legalism to justify its closure,” and likened this to what the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos did “to justify his trampling of our people’s civil and political rights.”

“Marcos resorted to legalism with the issuance of thousands of presidential decrees, executive orders and proclamations to justify his oppressive, corrupt and tyrannical rule,” Senator Francis Pangilinan, LP president, said in a statement on Friday, January 19.

He said a similar pattern could be seen “in the context of the relentless attacks on our institutions and on the stifling of dissent as seen in the following namely:

  • the arrest and detention of Senator (Leila) de Lima on outrageous testimonies of convicted criminals
  • the CHR P1000 peso budget slash by the House of Representatives
  • the killing of over 14,000 of our impoverished citizens in a drug war while billions of pesos of shabu was allowed to be smuggled into the country by officials in cahoots with drug syndicates
  • the threat of impeachment of the Ombudsman (Conchita Carpio-Morales)
  • the impeachment hearings against (Chief Justice Maria Lourdes) Sereno
  • the attacks on the Inquirer and ABS CBN Broadcasting corporation by the government

While he stopped short of calling outright for open resistance to these, Pangilinan warned that “what we do or fail to do will either enable or help defeat impunity.”