Statement of DILG ASec. Jonathan Malaya, Spokesperson, on the dismissal of the ACT petition against Sec. Eduardo M. Año and PDG Oscar Albayalde

February 8, 2019

We welcome the decision the Court of Appeals (CA) in outrightly dismissing the petition filed by the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) which contained malicious and groundless accusations that the Philippine National Police (PNP) has allegedly violated the constitutional right of freedom of association of their members.

More than pointing out their petition's infirmities that clearly violated the Rules of Court, it becomes clear as day that the petition they submitted to the Court is indeed nothing but propaganda to gain some publicity especially now that we are months away from the partylist elections.

It is clear from the Court's decision that the petition was half-baked and contained elementary errors which a well-prepared lawyer would never commit. It baffles us why the ACT filed such a petition bereft of verifiable evidence or proof to support its baseless allegations of a police crackdown on its members.

The DILG is dismayed that the ACT -- instead of entering into a dialogue with the PNP - has chosen to go to the courts in an effort to politicize this issue to increase name recall and media mileage.

Gratified by the CA's decision, the DILG and PNP shall continue to perform its task of protecting the right to life, liberty, and property of the people while making sure that legitimate dissent, done within the bounds of the law, is respected.