Youth party withdraws ‘ban God’ bill

KABATAAN Partylist is withdrawing House Bill 6330, or An Act Empowering Heads of Offices and Departments to Strictly Implement the Constitutional Provisions on Religious Freedom in Government Offices, in response to the appeal and clamor of our members, constituents, supporters, various groups, institutions and the general public to reconsider the filing of such measure.

In a statement, Kabataan Partylist seeks to clarify that the bill has no intention to “ban God”, suppress any religion or belief and prevent government employees from practicing their faith. The purpose of the bill is to ensure that government offices do not favor one religion over the other,  or discriminate one against the other.

“Kabataan Partylist sincerely apologizes for any offense the bill caused. We are sad that we hurt the religious sentiments of many, when our desire was to uphold and promote religious sensitivity and harmony,” the group said.

“We hope the conversations will continue about the need to respect different beliefs in society. We are encouraged by the fact that despite the misunderstandings, the bill initiated relevant discussions on freedom of religion as one of the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution,” the group said in a statement.

Kabataan Partylist would rather bring to the public’s attention other pending and priority bills and advocacies that it had been promoting for the past three years and which need utmost attention at present. Among these are the need for education reforms, protection of workers’ rights, environment protection, good governance and cosumer rights empowerment. In particular, the passage of measures such as the Tuition Regulation Bill, review of the K+12 program, Students’ Rights Act, Anti-No Permit, No Exam Act, BPO Workers’ Welfare Act and Public Wi-Fi Bill.

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