Dismiss Sedition Charges against the Opposition and leaders of the Catholic Church

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Solidarity Petition in support of Opposition and Church Leaders

Dear Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra,

As Filipinos who believe in the value of accountability and prudence in the government, we collectively condemn the indiscriminate filing of Sedition and other charges against stalwarts of the Opposition, progressive lawyers, and figureheads of the Catholic Church. We strongly believe that to entertain phony accusations based on statements of a questionable witness is a deliberate insult against our judicial process.

The attacks against individuals who have been vocal about their criticisms against the questionable approaches and policies of this administration is nothing new to us who have been watching; we have seen them intimidate Opposition members through Sen. Leila de Lima, former Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV, former Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, who have been keen on exposing various misdeeds taking place under this administration’s watch. The President himself has also continuously bred animosity towards the Catholic Church, who has been a staunch critic of the War on Drugs, by consistently throwing remarks that aim to destroy the reputation and the credibility of the institution.

We believe that PNP’s recommendation to file Sedition and other charges against opposition members, progressive lawyers, and Catholic Church leaders is yet another attempt to intimidate dissenters, censor free speech and redirect attention from the more important issues the government must answer to.

We write to you as Filipinos who call for accountability, criticalness and exercise of the rule of law.

We appeal to the Filipino people to show our support to a true democracy where a genuine opposition can call out the government for its misdeeds, and to show our support to the Catholic Church by signing this petition.

We also appeal to the Department of Justice to drop the Sedition and other charges against stalwarts of the Opposition, progressive lawyers and leaders of the Catholic Church.

Finally, we urge President Rodrigo Duterte and his administration to stop suppressing dissent and instead, focus on addressing the real issues that the Filipino people face – such as protecting our sovereignty and solving poverty in the country.