THE government of the Republic of the Philippines - Monitoring Committee (GRP-MC) launched on Friday the Comprehensive Agreement on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (Cahrihl) Compliance Mindanao Pilot Monitoring Station in Davao City, designed to address violations and monitor compliance for promotion of humanitarian law down to the grassroots level.
"The GRP-MC decided to come up with a mechanism which will provide better access to the population in availing this monitoring system. Maybe we should go down to the community level," Supervising Panel and member of the GRP Negotiating Panel Lawyer Antonio Arellano said.
The GRP-MC is composed of lawyer Franklin M. Quijano as the chairperson, deputy regional prosecutor Barbara Mae Flores and Department of Justice Undersecretary Antonio T. Kho as members and lawyer Caesar Europa of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and Alladin Diega of International Alert as Observers.
The GRP-MC advocates the Cahrihl in coordination with government agencies, security sector and the civil society. The GRP-MC will monitor the commitment and compliance of government agencies and offices to human rights and IHL.
Arellano said that anybody can report violations of non-compliance to the Cahrihl.
The GRP-MC will accommodate the complaints subject to investigation of their veracity.
If they receive complaints, they will talk with their counterparts in the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and discuss possible solution and it would be up to the complainant to file charges.
He said that the monitoring station will receive and record complaints of non-compliance to the Cahrihl and endorse these complaints to the GRP-MC. This process will enhance the ability of the GRP-MC to promote and uphold human rights and IHL.
They also plan to establish 10 monitoring stations in different regions that are conflict-affected. The Cahrihl-Compliance Pilot Monitoring Station in Mindanao will be based in Davao City.
Flores will head the Pilot Monitoring Station in Davao City and she will be assisted by Susannah C. Talingting, Mindanao Coordinator for the Cahrihl-Compliance Mindanao Pilot Monitoring Station.