The youth will not be silenced

KABATAAN Party-list and various youth groups remain unsilenced calling for the withdrawal of Cybercrime Prevention Law or RA 10175 as its temporary restraining order (TRO) expires on February 6.

“It is very clear in the 1987 Philippine Constitution that no law shall deprive our freedom of expression,” said Kabataan Party-list National President Atty. Terry Ridon referring to the online libel provision of the controversial law.
Youths remain determined to stand against RA 10175 as Kabataan Party-list spearheads another concert against cybercrime law called “Rock for Your Rights” which will be held on the eve of the TRO expiration in front of the Supreme Court.

BLKD and other names from the famous Fliptop arena are expected to perform and to show support in denouncing the cybercrime law. Also, cultural groups and student bands from various schools and universities are lined-up to perform on the concert.

Together with Kabataan Party-list was joined by different progressive groups, bloggers, and students from different schools and universities.

“Even the United Nations has declared that the Philippine libel law is exaggerated. But the Aquino administration made an extremely repressive move by passing RA 10175 especially with its provisions of online libel,” Ridon added.

In October 2011, the United Nations Human Rights Committee (UNHRC) has declared that Philippine libel law to be excessive and violates International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) where the Philippines also signed.

Ridon also said that the internet, particularly social networking sites, has been a broad venue for netizens to exchange ideas and a great way to communicate.

“But how can we freely express ourselves now if there is a law that can put us to jail just by liking, tweeting, or posting something on the internet,” Ridon added.

“We should never forget that during the presidential campaigns in 2010, President Aquino vowed to prioritize a law regarding the Freedom of Information or FOI. But obviously, Aquino’s promise was meant to be broken as FOI remains stagnant. Instead, Aquino signed RA 10175 that is very repressive in its nature and he remains firm on retaining its online libel provision,” Ridon stated.

Kabataan Partylist vowed to hound the Cybercrime Law if it was to persist beyond TRO.

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