Letter of the NDFP Joint Secretariat to GRP Department of Justice

Letter of the NDFP-Nominated Section of the Joint Secretariat to the GRP's Department of Justice 

NDFP Nominated Section of the Joint Secretariat
JOINT MONITORING COMMITTEE
(for the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect of Human Rights
and International Humanitarian Law)

We would like to inform you that the thirteen (13) “Subpoenas to Respondents” you issued in I. S. No. 2006-225 (PNP-DIDM vs. Jose Maria Sison a.k.a. Joma, et.al) for: Violation of Art. 134 in relation to Art. 135 of the Revised Penal Code for 37 individuals dated 06 March 2006 that you delivered to the address "National Democratic Front, 6th Floor, Immaculate Multi Purpose Building, Lantana Street, Cubao, Quezon City" is improperly addressed.

Letter of the NDFP-Nominated Section of the Joint Secretariat to the GRP's Department of Justice 

NDFP Nominated Section of the Joint Secretariat
JOINT MONITORING COMMITTEE
(for the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect of Human Rights
and International Humanitarian Law)

6/F Immaculate Conception Multi Purpose Center,
41 Lantana Street, Cubao,
1111 Quezon City, Philippines
Tel.: 725-2072 / Telefax: 725-1457
E-mail: [email protected]

Deana P. Perez
Senior State Prosecutor

Edwin S. Dayog
Senior State Prosecutor

Merba A. Waga
State Prosecutor

Melvin J. Abad
State Prosecutor

Department of Justice
Padre Faura, Manila

Dear Sirs and Mesdames,

We would like to inform you that the thirteen (13) “Subpoenas to Respondents” you issued in I. S. No. 2006-225 (PNP-DIDM vs. Jose Maria Sison a.k.a. Joma, et.al) for: Violation of Art. 134 in relation to Art. 135 of the Revised Penal Code for 37 individuals dated 06 March 2006 that you delivered to the address "National Democratic Front, 6th Floor, Immaculate Multi Purpose Building, Lantana Street, Cubao, Quezon City" is improperly addressed.

The said subpoenas were ministerially received by the guard of the building this morning with the notation that he does not know these 37 individuals and that they do not hold office here. Our office staff ministerially received the said subpoenas as part of customary procedure.

We do not represent the individuals or purported names mentioned in the subpoenas. Neither are they employed, hold office or live at this address.

For your information, the address "6th Floor, Immaculate Multi Purpose Building, Lantana Street, Cubao, Quezon City" is not an office of the National Democratic Front. It is the office of the Joint Secretariat (JS) of the Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC). The Joint Monitoring Committee is the body tasked to monitor the implementation of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) to which as you should know the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) is a signatory. The Joint Secretariat has two sections – the GRP-nominated section and the NDFP-nominated section – that hold office in this address. Attached for your further enlightenment are pertinent documents on the JMC and the JS.

As an independent support staff of the Joint Monitoring Committee, the Joint Secretariat is wholly supported and funded by the Royal Norwegian Government (RNG) through the Geneva-based Center for Humanitarian Dialogue (CHD). The CHD is the lessee of the Joint Secretariat office space owned by the Immaculate Conception Parish School which is owned by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cubao headed by the Most Rev. Bishop Honesto Ongtioco, DD.

The JS office, situated in the heart of the city amidst a church and school, and located in the same public building as the offices and residences of the Diocese of Cubao holds regular working hours and days. It receives on a regular basis representatives and high officials of the Royal Norwegian Government, embassies, the UNICEF, Amnesty International, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), international and local human rights and church organizations, researchers, media and those who file complaints for alleged violations of the CARHRIHL.

It is highly anomalous and improper for the Department of Justice to serve the said subpoenas or any other processes on the Joint Secretariat on persons not connected with it. It is grossly irresponsible for the DOJ to identify the JS office as their address. The Joint Secretariat cannot also be expected to serve as the process server or sheriff of the Department of Justice.

We would like to remind you that this action by the Department of Justice violates the integrity of the Joint Secretariat, impairs its ability to carry out its tasks and functions as mandated by the CARHRIHL, and harasses its members and staff. It is a serious violation of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law as well as the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) forged by the GRP and NDFP.

In view of the above, you should consider the subpoena as not served. Moreover, we expect that this error, whether wittingly committed or not, will not be repeated in the future.

Respectfully yours,

MARISSA P. DUMANJUG-PALO
Head of Secretariat

Assisted by:

Atty. EDRE U. OLALIA
Legal Consultant

Attachments:

  • Oslo Joint Statement; Annex A; Operational Guidelines for the Joint Monitoring Committee – all dated 14 February 2004
  • The Second Oslo Joint Statement; Annex A; Annex B – all dated 3 April 2004
  • Statement by the Joint Monitoring Committee – 15 April 2004
  • Statement by the Joint Monitoring Committee on the Opening of the Office of its Joint Secretariat – 4 June 2004
  • Press Statement issued by the NDFP-nominated section to the Joint Secretariat of the Joint Monitoring Committee – 3 March 2006

cc:
Mr. Fidel V. Agcaoili, Chairperson, NDFP-MC and Member, NDFP panel

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