Internet freedom bill filed to amend Cybercrime Law-A A +A
Monday, October 1, 2012
MANILA -- A party-list lawmaker on Monday proposed an "Internet Freedom" bill in Congress to effectively repeal contentious provisions in Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Law.
Kabataan party-list Representative Raymond "Mong" Palatino said his measure will also enumerate the rights of netizens, the supposed target of the controversial Cybercrime Law, which penalizes online libel.
"If we analyze the Cybercrime Law, it is apparent that it restricts rather than protects netizens. Apart from repealing RA 10175 through the Internet Freedom Bill, we intend to lay down the inalienable rights of Filipino Internet users," Palatino said.
Palatino noted that Internet access and online freedom of expression was recently added by the United Nations Human Rights Council to the list of basic human rights.
“With the Internet Freedom Bill, we seek to assert this right, and ensure that the Internet is free from censorship and totalitarian suppression," the lawmaker said.
Senator Francis "Chiz" Escudero earlier said he will file a similar measure in the Senate to remove several provisions in the Cybercrime Law.
Meanwhile, Kabataan party-list also filed on Monday a petition for prohibition on RA 10175 before the Supreme Court.
An initial list of signatories on the said petition includes Palatino, ACT Teachers party-list Representative Antonio Tinio, UP Student Regent Cleve Arguelles, Philippine Collegian Editor-in-Chief Katherine Elona, and UP College of Mass Communication Dean Roland Tolentino.
Earlier, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima assured that the constitutional rights of netizens will be protected in the implementation of the new law.
As of this posting, five petitions have been filed before the Supreme Court questioning the constitutionality of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.
Section 19 of RA 10175, authorizes the justice secretary to restrict or block access to computer data found for have prima facie violation of cybercrimes as defined by law.
Outrage over the controversial Cybercrime Prevention Act continues as a youth party-list group will go to the Supreme Court on Monday to file a petition seeking to declare unconstitutional some provisions on the new law that allegedly violate freedom of expression. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)