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Remulla pooh-poohs UN-backed same-sex, divorce; critics ridicule him

by Jericho Zafra

The Philippines has rejected the call from the United Nations to legalize same-sex marriage, divorce, and LGBT rights bill during the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in Geneva.

Because the Philippines is a predominantly Catholic nation, the Secretary of Justice, Jesus Crispin Remulla, indicated last Saturday in a radio interview that the Marcos administration completely disregarded these proposals because they are “not acceptable” in the Philippines.

“The Philippines did not support 55 recommendations since they seem to be too sweeping, vague, or even contradictory,” Remulla said during the 41st session of the UPR.

Among these calls by the UN shunned by the Philippine government were the same-sex marriage, divorce, and Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) bill.

In a statement, the national LGBTQIA+ alliance Bahaghari criticized Remulla for his stance.

“It is absurd and in gross violation of the (1987) Constitution for the Marcos admin to cite religious text as basis for rejecting much-needed laws for gender equality and human rights,” said Bahaghari.

Bahaghari Chairperson Reyna Valmores said that the justice secretary “should be reminded” of the 1987 Constitution which states the separation of Church and State is inviolable.

According to Valmores, other predominantly Catholic nations such as Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, and Mexico have passed legislation providing equal rights for women and LGBTQIA+ individuals, including marriage equality and other safeguards. 

“If Catholic faith is to be the basis anyway, the Marcos admin’s argument is moot,” Valmores said.

Photo: Screengrab from UN Web TV



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