Labor groups reject death penalty revival

Labor groups said the country needs solutions to the current health and economic crisis brought about by the coronavirus pandemic instead of the reimposition of death penalty.


Nagkaisa Labor Coalition chair Sonny Matula slammed the ill-timed proposal of President Duterte to revive death penalty, while Filipinos were still struggling to deal with the COVID-19 crisis.

“Death penalty is the least that people should hear at the time they were facing real death and hunger in this time of the pandemic,” he said.

“This nation needs more signs of life, not more death on the horizon,” Matula, a lawyer, stressed.

The NLC official asserted the people need “solid guarantees” to their constitutional rights and measures that would address “joblessness, loss of incomes, and economic recession.”

In his last Monday’s address to the nation, Duterte made another push for the approval of a bill reviving death penalty by lethal injection for drug-related charges.

Duterte has also called for the swift passage of the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act or Bayanihan 2 intended to facilitate the country’s economic recovery.

The proposed measure includes P140 billion for various programs to improve healthcare resources as well as provide support for affected workers and industries.

But Matula said the amount was not enough to enable the Philippines to overcome the economic crisis it is facing.

The labor groups scored the government for its lack of formidable healthcare and decisive economic recovery plan.

If not by coronavirus, Matula said they believed death will come from hunger.

“This glaring lack of a bold yet feasible plan, we are afraid, will surely lead us to more deaths. And that is criminal neglect on the part of the government itself. Now, who wants death imposed upon himself?” he said.