Castro on Bato’s refusal to attend hearing: A cowardly act

MANILA. Senator Ronald dela Rosa (left) and House Deputy Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Party-list Representative France Castro.
MANILA. Senator Ronald dela Rosa (left) and House Deputy Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Party-list Representative France Castro.Photos from Facebook pages of Dela Rosa and Castro

“HE HIMSELF should face investigation and be held accountable.”

These were the words of House Deputy Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Party-list Representative France Castro as she criticized Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa for refusing to attend the House inquiry into human rights violations during former President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war.

“A cowardly act,” Castro said, referring to Dela Rosa’s refusal.

She said on Sunday, June 30, 2024, that Dela Rosa is attempting to evade accountability and using inter-parliamentary courtesy as an excuse. “He is afraid to face the victims of the bloody drug war that he and former president [Rodrigo] Duterte orchestrated.”

The House Committee on Human Rights, during its hearing on June 24, invited Duterte and Dela Rosa, who was the former Philippine National Police chief, to attend a future hearing regarding the alleged extrajudicial killings committed during the previous administration.

Dela Rosa, however, refused to attend the hearing.

“If he truly believes in the righteousness of their actions, he should have no fear in facing this inquiry. The victims and their families deserve nothing less than the truth and justice,” Castro said, urging Dela Rosa to reconsider his decision.

Castro also spoke on Dela Rosa’s claim that the justice system works because some police officers have also been convicted.

"The convictions are too few and far between. As one of the architects of this bloody war on drugs, he himself should face investigation and be held accountable," she said.

Castro stressed the need for accountability and actual justice for both the victims and their families, and that Dela Rosa’s refusal to attend only reinforces the suspicion that he has something to hide. (Kirby Clint P. Antoni, UP Tacloban intern)

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