PNP spreading disinformation to prepare public for an assault on Batasan
By Satur C. Ocampo
House Deputy Minority Leader
Bayan Muna Representative
I challenge the Philippine National Police to stop its disinformation campaign against the Batasan 5 and detained Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran, and desist from any plan to assault the Batasan Pambansa in order to arrest Members of Congress.
Consider the following PNP disinformation:
1. The Batasan 5 have already been charged.
Fact: There remains no charge against the Batasan 5 in any court of law nationwide. In the case of Rep. Beltran, he has been charged with inciting to sedition.
2. The Batasan 5 are already under arrest.
Fact: We are under the protective custody of the House of Representatives by virtue of House Resolution 1169.
3. The Batasan 5 are planning an escape to join the underground.
Fact: As duly-elected Members of Congress determined to exercise our mandate and to fulfill our duties, we sought House protection against warrantless arrest by the PNP. The preliminary investigation into the PNP’s fabricated complaint against us has been set on 13 March 2006.
4. Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza violated protective custody by leaving the Batasang Pambansa.
Fact: Rep. Maza was elected as member of the House delegation to the bicameral conference committee, was authorized by the House plenary to attend the bicameral conference committee meeting, and promptly returned to Batasan soon after her engagement in the Senate.
5. There was a plan of the New People’s Army to rescue imprisoned Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran.
Fact: The PNP has consistently prevented Rep. Beltran’s staff and partymates from meeting the detained Member of Congress.
The lies of the PNP are calculated. They want to demonize the Batasan 5 and Ka Bel in the eyes of the public, and to build a clamor for the PNP to make an arrest.
The PNP should stop the disinformation and any premeditated plan to attack the House of Representatives, which would spark a constitutional crisis. It should stop playing the role of being a private security force of Mrs. Arroyo. It should respect the right of everyone to due process.
Our lawyers led by Justice Romeo T. Capulong are now studying all the possible cases that may be filed against Gen. Lomibao and other PNP personnel who will violate our constitutional rights.
Our legal position on the continuing threats of illegal arrest against us by the PNP and the DOJ is explained in the letter of our lawyers to Justice Sec. Raul Gonzalez dated 7 March 2006. ###