Sunday, February 26, 2006

Hold the Arroyo regime liable for the illegal arrest and detention of AP Rep. Crispin Beltran

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From the Office of Anakpawis Representative Crispin B. Beltran

Lisa C. Ito, Public Information Officer (+63)927.796.7006

Tel. # (+632) 931-6615 Email:

URL: http://
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*National Headquarters*

*56 k-9 St. West Kamias, Quezon City*

Tel # 4269442 Randy Evangelista, media liaison officer (0928)7296945


*Hold the Arroyo regime liable for the illegal arrest and detention *

*of Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran and rising state suppression of civil

*Anakpawis National Executive Committee*

*February 25, 2006***

Anakpawis partylist, its National Executive Committee, its regional,
provincial, and municipal chapters, and constituents, condemns in the
strongest terms, the illegal arrest and detention of Anakpawis
Representative and Chairperson Crispin Beltran by elements of the Criminal
Intelligence and Detention Group (CIDG) of the Philippine National Police
(PNP) at around 10 in the morning today.

We condemn this abominable act of political repression directed against a
legislator who has ably and consistently represented the interests and
aspirations of the toiling masses for social change, through legislation
such as those advocating wage increases for workers and employees in the
private and public sectors, and through supporting the broad and justified
calls for President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's removal from the Palace.

The CIDG, under the pretense of 'inviting [Rep. Beltran] for questioning',
has illegally arrested, detained, and treacherously violated Congressman
Beltran's rights to immunity from arrest when PNP elements led by a certain
Maj. Rene Corpuz accosted Ka Bel, his wife Rosario, and four other
companions, in the vicinity of Ka Bel's residence in Muzon, Bulacan
and 'escorted'
them to Camp Crame.

As of this afternoon, Ka Bel remains in the custody of the CIDG under charge
of inciting to rebellion. This questionable warrant of arrest―which the CIDG
failed to procure at first, and instead, presented while Ka Bel's
was squarely
in the hands of the PNP―is based on previously-quashed charges of inciting
to rebellion filed against Ka Bel during the Marcos regime. These
charges have been nullified under the Aquino administration and hold no
legal basis at present.

The arrest of Crispin Beltran is therefore illegal and without basis with
regards to the charges made. The PNP has furthermore no right to hold
Congressman Beltran for a minute longer in its custody, as the Constitution
expressly provides solons immunity from arrest while the House of
Representatives is in session.

In less than 24 hours of its announcement, this 'state of emergency' being
peddled by the Arroyo regime through Presidential Proclamation 1017 and its
implementing orders has yielded grave violations of civil liberties, press
freedom, and international human rights conventions.

Ka Bel filed pro-poor bills in the House of Representatives, such as HB 1063
providing for a P125 wage increase for private sector workers and HB 1064
providing for a P3,000 salary hike for all public sector workers. Both bills
seek to provide immediate relief for all workers amidst the price hikes,
RVAT, and other anti-poor measures and policies of the Arroyo regime.

These abominable acts of political repression only further exposes Pres.
Arroyo's insatiable greed for power and brazen disregard for the devastating
effects of her policy decision on the lives of the toiling masses. Ka Bel is
being suppressed for his vocal pronouncements and legislative actions that
articulate the toiling masses real miseries under the GMA regime, their
demands for immediate relief and upliftment from record-high poverty and
hunger levels, and their disgust and opposition to the corruption,
repression, and electoral fraud committed under the Arroyo regime.

This state of calamitous repression must not be allowed to continue. These
only justify the urgency and correctness of the long-standing call for Pres.
Arroyo's immediate removal from office, lest another fledgling dictatorship
bring the dark years of Martial Law back with a new ferocity.

We are holding the Arroyo regime liable for the grave violations of human
rights that have started since Day One of her assumption of the Presidency,
and for the intensified assaults on civil liberties that this 'state of
emergency' unconvincingly attempts to justify.

We call for the immediate release of Rep. Beltran. We call for the
restoration of civil liberties, such as the right to a free press, to
peaceful assembly, and to freedom of expression, which the Arroyo
administration has mangled beyond recognition.


*Rep. Rafael Mariano *

*President *
* *

*Carmen Deunida*

*Vice-President *
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*Cherry Clemente*

*Secretary General *


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