World Youth Alliance regrets that House Bill 4727, which permits the death penalty for drug-related crimes in the Philippines, passed third and final reading in the House of Representatives on March 7, 2017, following a debate which has been criticized for its brevity and the use of procedures against bill opponents. The final passage of the bill is now dependent on ongoing discussions and debates at the Senate committee hearings. The Senate suspended discussions on a similar bill last month due to concerns that reinstating the death penalty would violate the Philippines’ international treaty obligations.
WYA opposes the reinstatement of the death penalty because every human being has intrinsic and inviolable dignity that begins at conception and ends at natural death. This dignity must be cherished in custom and safeguarded by law. While WYA supports legislative efforts to reduce crime we cannot support the imposition of capital punishment to curtail the drug trade. For these reasons, WYA encourages all Filipino Senators to oppose the death penalty, and pledges to support them as they do so.
WYA also calls on all Filipinos and supporters from around the world who say “yes to dignity” to show their support by co-signing our statement. We will continue to voice our concerns to the nation’s leaders and will be closely monitoring the upcoming debates.