By Genalyn Kabiling
The United Nations’ special rapporteur system is losing credibility whenever its envoy Agnes Callamard interferes with the country’s affairs and wages a demolition job against President Duterte, according to a Palace official.
Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo took another swipe at Callamard after she criticized the “dangerous and potentially deadly” proposal to lower the age of criminal liability in the Philippines.
He told Callamard to avoid meddling in another nation’s affairs especially without reading the contents of the bill.
“Dr. Callamard would do well by restraining herself from using her UN post in continuing her interference in the country’s domestic affairs while waging a political agenda of demolition against the President through her obviously unstudied accusations and parroting false information, a process that certainly diminishes the credibility and respectability of the UN Special Rapporteur mechanism,” he said.
Callamard earlier tweeted that the bill seeking to lower the age of criminal responsibility from 15 to nine years old was shameful. She also described the proposal approved by the House justice committee as “dangerous and potentially deadly.”
Panelo hit back at Callamard, saying it was “shameful” that she has dipped anew her fingers on the country’s domestic affairs.
“This time, she poked on the issue of lowering the age of criminal liability without educating herself on the contents of the proposed bill that she may have the intellectual wherewithal on the whys and wherefores of the contemplated legislation, which she incorrectly and arbitrarily described as ‘dangerous and potentially deadly,'” he said.
“What is ‘dangerous and potentially deadly’ is her intrusive and ignorant theorem on how a sovereign state deals with its problem with criminality,” he added.
Panelo said the bill was being drowned by administration critics and detractors who have not read the provision of the bill. He said their opposing view was based “either on blissful ignorance or pretended misinformation.”
He said the bill, which will place children in conflict with the law in youth care facilities not in regular jails, seeks to protect kids from criminals who force them to commit crimes. The proposed law would also deter criminals from using minors as their accomplices.
The House committee on justice recently approved a bill that would bring down the minimum age of criminal liability to nine years old. It would amend provisions of the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 that exempts children 15 years old and below from criminal responsibility.
Several lawmakers however have opposed the controversial bill, saying the age of nine was too young to be made accountable for crimes.