Mong Palatino

Blogging about the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific since 2004


@mongster is a Manila-based activist, former Philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of Asia-Pacific affairs.

Published by Bayan Metro Manila

The police displayed utter disrespect towards the Nasino family for deploying dozens of armed troops when they escorted Reina Mae Nasino to attend the wake of her child Baby River.

Authorities lied when they claimed that they lacked the personnel who can guard Nasino for the three-day furlough originally granted by the court.

Instead of allowing Nasino a longer time to grieve with her family, the police tried three times to forcibly escort Nasino back to the Manila City Jail even if the three-hour visit allowed by the court was not yet over.

BJMP officers carried high-powered arms in a wake, provoked tension when they tried to snatch a young mother from her dead child, and traumatized a grieving family.

BJMP is concocting a lie by arguing that Nasino is a high-security inmate. Even the dubious search warrant used by the police to raid the Bayan Manila office in Tondo in November 2019 didn’t mention Nasino’s name. Nasino is also far from being a flight risk since she is naturally expected to be present at her child’s burial on Friday. Hindi tatakas ang isang nanay na may anak na ililibing.

We see no reason for the insane deployment of troops other than to intimidate Nasino, instill fear in the defiant family, and create a chilling effect in the ranks of activists.

They miserably failed since Nasino asserted her right to speak, her family and friends protected her, and activists stood their ground in resisting the strong-arm tactics of the BJMP.

The BJMP only created an unnecessary disturbance, distracted a family in mourning, and exposed their callous behavior.

Our lawyers are already seriously considering the filing of contempt charges.

We insist that Nasino was only right to share her sentiments to the public by talking to journalists who were also at the wake. We didn’t see authorities making a ruckus when VIP inmates gave media interviews in the past. Even the convicted General Palparan was given the chance to speak from inside his cell when a pro-Duterte blogger interviewed him.

The misbehavior of the BJMP today reflected the cruel acts of injustice committed against Nasino and fellow activists. From being charged with a trumped-up case based on fabricated evidence to the indifference shown by the court to her appeals not to be separated from her baby, Nasino was made to feel the full brunt of state-sponsored violence.

We deplore the inhumane directives given by the rabid anti-communist officials of the Duterte government. This heavy-handed approach has the obvious backing of top levels in the bureaucracy. They are merciless, heartless, yet petty and pathetic for being arrogant against a young grieving mother.

We will not back down as we continue to join the Nasino family in mourning the death of Baby River. The fight for justice continues. Meanwhile, the BJMP and police should back off and let Reina Mae Nasino bury her child in peace.

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