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Harassment on Press Freedom
« on: April 15, 2009, 07:02:29 PM »
Two lawyers expressed their strong condemnation of a city council resolution declaring broadcaster Kagawad Roberto "Batchoy" Alba a persona non grata for the radioman's alleged critical statements against officials of the Catholic Church here.

Lawyers Victor de la Serna and Salvador Grupo however view the council resolution as an act of harassment on press freedom.

According to De la Serna, the city council has "no business interfering" on Alba's commentary arising from complaints of parishioners and residents of Dauis.

Grupo agrees with De la Serna saying the resolution passed by the SP "has no legal force and effect, [as it is] merely an expression of opinion".         

The former provincial prosecutor added that the resolution "will not deprive [Alba] the exercise of his basic constitutional rights as a citizen and as a parishioner".

"Alba did not even criticize the Catholic religion, he merely listened to the complaints raised by a certain Flora Loquellano, said to be a spokesman of the project oppositors in Dauis," De la Serna stressed.

"The doctrine on separation of the church and the state is not even an issue here. This resolution has no relevance at all as far as the situation is concerned," De la Serna explained.

LOOSE INTERPRETATION

De la Serna and Grupo said the term "persona non grata" is being utilized loosely for a certain purpose or whatever reason.

"The term has a specialized meaning and application in diplomacy or international relations which refers to a person who is not acceptable by the government issuing the order, and generally applies to diplomats," Grupo explained.

"A person so declared is stripped of his diplomatic privileges and usually sent back to his country of origin or barred from entering a country issuing the order," he said.

In the case of Alba however, the SP resolution is a prerogative of the legislative body.

Thus, Alba or his sympathizers can also declare the councilors "personas non grata".

The two lawyers are dismayed that the exercise of the privilege "is abused and made an instrument of harassment, defamation and gross injustice." - The Bohol Chronicle

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Re: Harassment on Press Freedom
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2009, 02:13:47 AM »
I agree!

I had hearBoy Guing mention that a texter had asked for the tape of Batchoy's program so that it could be turned over to the KBP office I had to laugh and think the same back at you DYTR for allowing Mayor Lim to be on air with a licensed KBP'r and he is bad mouthing and putting people down which is also a form of abuse of KBP priveladges when the KBP'r on board knows he should cool down the mayor when he goes into tyrants during Mayor's Report's every Saturday morning.



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