UN body resolution did not have simple majority, says Roque

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 18 2019 03:02 PM

MANILA - The Philippine government should not waste time on the United Nations Human Rights Council-backed resolution calling for a review of the country's drug war, former presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said on Thursday.

In an interview on ANC's Headstart, Roque said the resolution did not even receive a simple majority during the votes.

Of the 48 member-states, 18 voted "Yes", 14 "No", while 15 abstained.

"A record like that shows that it does not have overwhelming support within the HRC itself because it does not even have a simple majority," he said.

"My advice to the Philippine government at this point is really not to give it too much attention. Number 1, the voting record does not show it has overwhelming support. Number 2, it's a toothless tiger anyway."
 
He added that the resolution has no moral authority and that the institution has no power to jail or impose sanctions on anyone.

The UNHRC mandate, he said, is achieved through periodic reporting of states and through special rapporteur. However, special rapporteurs cannot investigate without the invitation of the sovereign state, he said.

"I'm sure the Philippines will allow an investigation if you have a credible investigator. But right now, the special rapporteur for extrajudicial killing Agnes Callamard has shown downright bias against the Philippines," he said.

Meanwhile, he said the Philippines should not withdraw from the UN rights body.

"Because you would lose whatever voice you have in the council. It would actually be against your interest to withdraw at this point in time. It is better to stay, because when were there, we can still be heard," he said.