NCCP welcomes Supreme Court Decision Upholding Human Rights, advocates to strengthen laws safeguarding the dignity of life

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8, NRSV

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) welcomes the recent landmark ruling by the Supreme Court, affirming that “red-tagging, vilification, labeling, and guilt by association pose significant threats to an individual’s right to life, liberty, or security.” This groundbreaking decision follows the partial grant of the Writ of Amparo for activist Sigfred D. Deduro. We laud the high court for promoting, upholding, and protecting the rights of the people.

The NCCP underscores the firsthand experiences of church members, clergy, and the institution itself, regarding the scourge of red-tagging. The NCCP, alongside other organizations such as Oxfam and the Farmers Development Center (FARDEC), was unjustly implicated along with 18 organizations red-tagged by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Department of National Defense (DND) in a Congressional hearing in November 2019.

Since the 2000s, red tagging has been a prelude to more serious forms of human rights violations – extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and the like.  The rampant red-tagging in recent times has been a constant threat hovering above human rights defenders including church people, advocates and even those just expressing their right to freedom of expression. Red tagging violates the right of church people who are providing services to and advocating for the rights of the poor and marginalized, to exercise the freedom of religion and the exercise of ministries in furtherance of religious beliefs.

The NCCP adamantly asserts that “red-tagging, vilification, labeling, and guilt by association” have no place in a democratic society. The NCCP thus, calls upon legislators to enact comprehensive measures such as the Human Rights Defenders Protection Act to safeguard the life, liberty, and security of all citizens and a law that will penalize red-tagging, recognizing it as a direct assault on the dignity and rights of individuals.

In solidarity, the NCCP stands united in prayer and action and calls for justice for victims of red-tagging who have suffered further human rights violations. Their plight is a critical reminder of the importance of collective action that ensures the protection and preservation of human rights and dignity and rights for all.


27 May 2024

Bishop Melzar D. Labuntog

The Most Rev. Brent Harry W. Alawas

Ms. Jennifer Ferariza-Meneses

Pastor Jon Dave A. Angeles
Vice Chairperson

Rev. Leonardo R. Morada

Ms. Minnie Anne M. Calub
General Secretary