Karapatan pleads to court: grant furlough to Reina Mae Nasino to allow her to properly grieve Baby River's death

Reina Mae Nasino endured her pregnancy behind bars, imprisoned over trumped-up charges. She pleaded to courts to grant her temporary humanitarian release for the delicate condition of bringing a child to the world amid the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country’s overcongested prisons — and yet the courts refused to listen.

Instead, Reina Mae Nasino had to suffer the sheer cruelty of being separated from her newborn child merely a few weeks after giving birth. They kept her baby away from a mother’s nurturing care, and they refused to even let Reina Mae Nasino be with her child in her dying moments. She would only see her baby in a small casket through a video call.

No words would be enough to describe this grave act of injustice: an innocent baby died because of the inaction of the courts and because of the State’s crackdown on dissent. Barring Reina Mae Nasino from visiting her baby’s wake and funeral would only be heartless — and there is no reason to deny her this last chance to see her baby.

Today, we join her family and other human rights advocates to call on the court to grant furlough to Reina Mae Nasino to allow her to properly grieve this terrible loss. We call on Manila Regional Trial Court Judge Paulino Quitoras Gallegos to listen to the cry of a bereaved mother who has already suffered too much for a crime she did not commit. This injustice cannot continue.

 

Cristina Palabay
Karapatan Secretary General