Surface my father, son of suspected CPP rebel pleads

Kin and rights group deplored Pernia’s incommunicado detention

The family of the arrested suspected communist rebel Iglecerio “Ka Choy” Pernia today appealed to the Armed Forces of the Philippines to surface him and respect his right to due process. The AFP denied having Pernia in custody at the Camp Aguinaldo days after his arrest in Bulacan on Jan. 9.

“Why are they hiding Papa from us?” said a frustrated Roberto, son of Pernia who failed to see his father yesterday as officials of the Intelligence Service Group of the AFP (ISAFP) refused to confirm where was being detained. As of this writing, the ISAFP has finally confirmed that they have Pernia but his family is yet to see him.

The younger Pernia and other relatives came all the way from Bicol yesterday to visit his detained father, after Bicol PNP spokesperson Sr. Superintendent Eliciar Bron confirmed to media that he was brought to ISAFP headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo.

“I’m hoping against hope that they will surface Papa unscathed, given the military’s notoriety in torturing their captives,” he added. Pernia also lamented how his father was maligned in the media by the AFP, who called Pernia a “gambler and extortionist.”

“They pictured him in bad light, when it was them who violated the laws and my father’s rights as a detained person,” said the younger Pernia.

Meanwhile, Jigs Clamor, KARAPATAN deputy secretary general lambasted the AFP for intentionally hiding Pernia from his family.

“Aside from the brazen extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances carried out by the AFP, they have time and again violated the rights of arrested persons,” Clamor said. He cited the case of NDF consultant Elizabeth Principe whom the AFP also denied having in custody, but had actually detained incommunicado from Nov. 28 until she was presented to the media on Dec. 1.

“How much intelligence does the ISAFP need to be able to confirm if an arrested person was in their custody?” Clamor commented. ###