“EFFECTIVE IMPLEMENTATION OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 10353: A COLLECTIVE ENDEAVOR”
Some 176 representatives from government and non-government sectors gathered for the Forum-Workshop on “Effective Implementation of Republic Act No. 10353: A Collective Endeavor” on March 6, 2013 at the GT Toyota Auditorium of the University of the Philippines Asian Center (UP-AC) in Diliman, Quezon City. Jointly organized by the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD), Families of Victims of Involuntary Disappearance (FIND), and the International Coalition Against Enforced Disappearances (ICAED), the forum-workshop was supported by the Embassy of Canada in the Philippines, and co-hosted by the UP Asian Center.
Joint Submission of AFAD and FIND (with the support of Misereor)
Third Cycle of the UN Universal Periodic Review
After analyzing the contents of the 2016 annual report, it can be observed that there is a dearth of ethical and legal foundations of the government and its legitimacy is controversial, as a result of the contrived and fraudulent elections. In order to remain in power, the government has decided to use repressive ways and means, violating human rights and with disregard to rule of law. Although the influential States and development partners have verbally criticized this situation, in practice, they seemingly did not take any principle position for the sake of their business and trade interests with Bangladesh. Bangladesh ratified several international Treaties and Conventions, including the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).
Odhikar believes that ‘democracy’ is a form of the State and presupposes that freedom and human rights are its foundations. Democracy is not merely a process of electing a ruler. Democracy is the result of the peoples’ struggle for inalienable rights, which become the fundamental premise to constitute the State defining collective aspirations and responsibilities. Therefore, the individual freedoms and democratic aspirations of the citizens – and consequently, peoples’ collective rights and responsibilities - must be the foundational principles of the State.