Philippines Elections: Human rights and democratic principles should be prioritized
May 12, 2016
On May 9, 2016, the people of the Philippines exercised their right of suffrage in choosing their next leader of the country to overcome the overarching challenges and struggles. We congratulate the Philippines on the overall observation of a vital component of a democracy a peaceful, free and fair election process.
This year’s elections in the Philippines celebrated over 80% voter turnout of the 54 million people who have registered to vote. Through the astounding turnout in the polls, the people of the Philippines have voiced their demand for change to corruption, crime, and inequality in the country. Their choice was made based on the expectations for a leader to bring progressive change to these challenges. The Asia Democracy Network hopes that the new President-elect, Rodrigo Duterte, will accept the people’s task and bring change to the country through institutional reform in leveling the playing field creating more opportunities for all reducing inequality, eliminating corruption, and reducing crime.
The ADN firmly expresses that bringing change to the Philippines in the best interest of the people must be done so respecting all fundamental human rights and democratic principles. As one of the oldest democracies in Asia, the Philippines have set a precedent and is a model for neighboring countries. Therefore, it is vital for the Philippines to uphold human rights and democratic values. We, Asia’s human rights defenders, democracy advocates that make up the ADN, look forward to the new leadership in bringing and expanding substantial change based on fundamental rights and democratic principles. ADN offers its vast network in the region including its Philippine-based members to partner with the new government in achieving these goals.