MANILA, Philippines – Following a failed impeachment bid against President Rodrigo Duterte, Magdalo Representative Gary Alejano said his group is considering bringing to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague the cases of killings linked to the Duterte administration’s war on drugs.
“The processes in Congress showed the House is unwilling to prosecute the President … With what happened now, our group is discussing about joining the complaint before the ICC,” he said in a news conference.
“Where else can we go to complain? We have nowhere else to go,” Alejano said.
On Monday, Duterte’s allies at the House of Representatives junked the impeachment complaint filed by Alejano against the President, describing the allegations as hearsay.
The partylist lawmaker had acknowledged at the hearing that he did not personally witness the killings, but asserted that he had reviewed the reports about the killings and the public pronouncements of the President about his drug campaign.
“We should not be led into believing that this complaint has no substance because the process earlier was not yet supposed to delve on that,” he said.
Alejano said he was prepared to present his evidence and witnesses, including the families of the victims of extrajudicial killings.
Before he filed the impeachment complaint, he said he also filed a resolution seeking an investigation into the killings, but this did not move at the House.
“Even if you are the President, you are not above the law. Just because the victims are poor, will we not speak up?” he said.
Last month, lawyer Jude Josue Sabio filed a 77-page complaint at ICC against Duterte and 11 other officials for alleged crimes against humanity in connection with the nationwide crackdown on drugs.
The Philippines is a state party to the Rome Statute, together with other 123 state parties, after ratifying it in August 2011.
The Rome Statute is the treaty that established the ICC, the first permanent international court that is capable of trying perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression, the Statute’s four core international crimes.
Click and watch the video report from News5’s Roices Naguit below: