Dispatch from Crame No. 230: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on PH gov’t allowing China to explore Benham Rise

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Kamakailan lang, kinumpirma ni Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano na pinayagan ng gobyerno ang pagsasaliksik ng China sa Benham Rise, sa kabila ng patuloy na panggigipit at pag-angkin nito sa ating mga teritoryo sa West Philippine Sea. Sinabi na rin noon ng China, hindi raw natin pwedeng angkinin ang Benham Rise, kahit pa idineklara na ng United Nations na bahagi ito ng ating exclusive economic zone.

Instead of defending our sovereignty and national dignity, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque time and again has proven that his Boss is owned and controlled by China. Roque insisted that China was right; that we do not have the capacity to explore Benham Rise.

Hindi ba nila alam mahigit isang dekada nang nagsasaliksik ang mga Pilipino sa Benham Rise?

Ano ba namang klaseng gobyerno ito? Ipinamimigay na nga ang ating mga teritoryo, napakababa pa ng tingin sa mga Pilipino.

Binabalewala ang karapatang mabuhay ng libu-libong maralita nating kababayan, ipinagkakait ang kalayaan sa pamamahayag, niyuyurakan ang Saligang Batas para sa pansariling mga kapritso, at ngayon, talagang lantaran na kung ipamigay ang ating soberanya sa padrino ni Duterte na bansang Tsina.

Ginoong Duterte: Kung may utang na loob ka sa China, huwag mong ipambayad ang dangal ng lahing Pilipino.

As UP Professor and International Maritime Law expert Jay Batongbacal said: this government’s “denigration of Filipino scientists and Filipinos in general, claiming they cannot explore Benham Rise without China or Chinese money, is a total sham meant to disempower and demean Filipinos and their capacity and capability as a people.”

In light of this, I will be filing a Senate Resolution to conduct an investigation, in aid of legislation, on the acts of the President and the Foreign Affairs Secretary allowing China to explore Benham Rise.

To Duterte and his cohorts: Shame on you! Do not fool the Filipino nation! Stop being lackeys of China. For once, uphold our sovereignty and defend our national dignity. ###

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