THE government should be held accountable for the death of suspected communist leader Andrea Rosal’s newborn baby, according to human rights group Karapatan.
Relatedly, an official of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has appealed to the government to allow Rosal to attend the burial of her baby.
Fr. Melvin Castro, executive director of the CBCP-Episcopal Commission on Family and Life, said Rosal also deserved humane treatment and the government should not deprive her of her right to attend the burial of her daughter.
Rosal, who gave birth to Diona Andrea on Saturday, is the daughter of the late rebel spokesman Gregorio “Ka Roger” Rosal. The infant died Sunday afternoon at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) due to oxygen deficiency in the blood.
The group demanded “justice for the debt of blood on the hands of President Benigno Aquino 3rd, the military, the police and other responsible agencies.”
Karapatan also called for “the unconditional release of [the baby’s]mother.”
The leftist group claimed that the death of the infant was due to Andrea’s stressful detention at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City.
It will be remembered that Andrea was arrested on March 27 in Caloocan City while she was seven months pregnant based on a warrant of arrest issued in Mauban, Quezon, for the non-bailable charges of kidnapping and murder. She has denied the charges.
Meanwhile, Rosal’s lawyer said they were disappointed at the decision of the court, noting that their motion was only partially granted.
It will be remembered that the camp of Rosal had appealed to the court to grant her a three-day visit for the wake and burial of her baby.
“The short span of time allowed for Andrea to visit her daughter’s wake is rather cruel considering that this would be the last time that she would be with her daughter,” Pastor Beth Tendero, spokesperson of Free Andrea Movement, said.
Tendero said the court has not allowed Andrea to grieve for her newborn, even while they were still at PGH.
“For the last time again, they are depriving Andrea of her right as a mother,” she added.
Rosal was arrested in Caloocan last March 27.
“We appeal to the government to allow Andrea Rosal to attend the burial of her baby … let us not deprive her right to bury her dead,” CBCP’s Castro said.
Meanwhile, the Church official noted that Rosal has been deprived of her basic right to receive appropriate medical care during her stay at the prison.
“She might be considered as rebel, but she is first and foremost a mother,” the CBCP official said.
AFP spokesperson Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala said that the accusation of the leftist group on the alleged irregularities of the government in taking care of Rosal was a “callous and unfair” judgment on the part of the government.
He added that Andrea was given the appropriate medical care after her arrest on March 27.