CRY FREEDOMPREFATORY STATEMENT The movie “Cry Freedom” pictures the Apartheid Government in South Africa in 1970’s. The majority blacks were ruled by the white minority. The Blacks’ (South Africa inhabitants and other ethnic groups) were deprived of their rights, movements and even associations. It pictured the country when the South Africans cannot voice out their opinions especially about the white people and most especially against the white people. Any person who is accused of committing any act, physically or orally, as long as the government of South Africa finds it as a criticism or against the white people, such accused shall be banned or incarcerated without giving him or her a chance to explain or defend himself. Steven Biko, one of the most respected freedom fighter for the Black Africans, was banned by the South African government and he was not allowed to step out of his banning area. This did not make him stop fighting. He went outside of his banishment zone and spoke at a gathering of black South Africans. He was arrested and interrogated by the security forces. He was bought to court in order to explain his message directed toward the South African government. After such hearing, the security officers visited his church and vandalized their properties. After knowing the incident, Donald Woods, a friend of Biko and editor of the Daily Dispatch newspaper, meets with the South African Minister of Justice in an attempt to prevent further abuse by the security force. However, after that, Woods was later harassed by security forces at his home as ordered by the Minister. Despite what happened, Biko went outside his banishment zone again and travelled to Cape Town to speak at a student-run meeting. On his way, he was caught and arrested by security forces. He was tortured causing his head a severe injury. Instead of bringing him to the police hospital, he was thrown in a prison van and driven on a rugged road, aggravating his brain injury and resulting to his death. The government, through the Minister of Justice, declared that his death was caused by “starvation” because he chose to do hunger strike in jail. After knowing the real cause of death of Biko, his friend Donald Woods worked to expose the police's complicity in his death. He attempted to expose photographs of Biko's body that contradict police reports that he died of a hunger strike, but he is prevented just before boarding a plane to leave and informed that he is now banned, therefore not able to leave the country. In order to be able to succeed in exposing the corrupt and racist nature of the government, Woods, together with his family, escaped and seek political asylum in England which they were granted. Biko was not the only one who died under suspicious circumstances while imprisoned by the Apartheid Government. Under such government, they declared that the anti-apartheid activists died for natural causes, suicide, accidents and the like. The government never gave an opportunity for these people to be heard nor to defend themselves. Once accused, they are put to jail, tortured and killed. . from the Filipinos with straight hairs from those with curly ones. Many people will be oppressed especially the poor. Inalienable in a way that these right cannot be given to them because it is inherent nor taken away from them. How much more if we will have a government that promotes and exercises the same acts as that of the government of South Africa at the time of Steve Biko? For sure. Moreover. the cultural minorities. universal suffrage. there shall be segregation of the whites from the browns from the blacks. and the like. then our country will become a country of the capitalists. What will be its implication to the Bill of Rights? Human rights’ basic premise is that all people around the world have legal rights which are inalienable and personal. liberty. free speech. Taking into consideration the Philippine scenario. only few will be given the opportunity to live well. Many are still subjected to Extra-judicial killings. What if the circumstances in the movie were to happen here in the Philippines? If the circumstances in the movie were to happen here in the Philippines. privacy and other moral and ethical behaviour sanctioned by national and international laws. all those who will be imprisoned will surely come from the poor because the poor are more prone of being suspected committing crimes or felonies. Those accused will not be heard and incarcerated without being subjected to due process.1. there are still group of people who are being oppressed and discriminated. People around the globe have the rights to life. leading them to implement the same to their advantages. Our government shall become a government of men and not of laws. Those men shall be the people running the government and they will rule it in whatever or however they want to. Thus. there shall be a possibility of those innocent people who are accused of committing criminal acts to be imprisoned even if they did not really commit the acts they are accused of. equal rights of women. 2. despite the presence of the Bill of Rights enshrined in the current Philippine Constitution. they will interpret the laws in accordance to their own interpretation and not the real intent of the laws. education. Lots of Filipino people are still deprived of their fundamental rights including their rights to due process of law and freedom of expression and of the press. property. should those circumstances will happen here in the Philippines. They are important because every human has the right to live with dignity and be free from unreasonable constraints to pursue opportunities to improve his/her quality of life. Only the rich will become richer and the poor will become poorer. Worst. those laborers from capitalists. The Philippine Constitution is the fundamental law of the land. Bill of Rights has never been removed despite the evolution of the Philippine Constitution. religion. the Bill of Rights has always been the main content of each. It provides procedures to make sure that the rights of each and every citizen will be protected equally and without any discrimination on whom it should apply. We can never do away with it because it is a significant part of the Constitution. why should we need a constitution to protect our rights if those laws cannot be followed or implemented? If the circumstances in the movie. the whole Constitution will become inutile. It dictates how the government shall govern the people including but not limited to how they should treat their constituents whatever be their creed. the judiciary shall be of no use and law enforcers shall reign the whole country with abuse of authority and will disregard the basic procedures in the performance of their duties in the protection of one’s rights. especially the government. opinion. No courts to hear any kind of cases. Without the Bill of Rights. As can be gleaned. ethnicity and the like. colour. sexual orientation. This is because one of the purposes of the Bill of Rights is to guard any kind of arbitrary detention. Cry Freedom. most of the rights contained under the Bill of Rights in our Constitution are rights of the accused. Violation of such rights may cause the case filed against an accused to be dismissible. size. status. It is the basic law of which Filipinos must abide by. Rights are the reasons why we have laws to follow because the law provides and/or reiterate those rights and also it provides the rules on how to protect them. It is a charter of liberties for the individual and a limitation upon the power of the State. or by individual or groups of individuals. the Constitutional presumption that an accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty cannot be applied. Once this Bill of Rights be deleted in the Philippine Constitution. This is a manifestation of the importance of the Bill of Rights. then it is as if the Bill of Rights is constructively or impliedly abolished and shall become inutile. Thus. will happen in the Philippines. Our judiciary system is not perfect.The Philippine Bill of Rights is a declaration and enumeration of human rights and privileges which the Constitution is designed to protect against violation by the government. from the 1935 Philippine Constitution and the 1973 Philippine Constitution to the current 1987 Philippine Constitution. In all the Constitutions under which the Philippine has been governed. . from the Malolos Constitution then to the Cooper Act of 1902. the Bill of Rights is the main ingredient of the Constitution. no lawyers to enforce and/or defend one’s rights shall be needed. Many people are being wrongly accused and that incarcerating or penalizing an accused without due process would lead to miscarriage of justice. By analysis. to prevent the use of the strong arm of the law in an oppressive and vindictive manner.Their laws shall be the laws of their superiors and those of the government and not the laws of the land. Thus. Some. This is what happened in the movie Cry Freedom. Certainly. If this is the case that it is the governing people violating the Bill of Rights. In short. and to afford adequate protection to constitutional rights. if not all government officials of the Philippines may have the notion that they are the real bosses and not the public. he discussed the purpose of the Bill of Rights by saying: “The purpose of the Bill of Rights is to protect the people against arbitrary and discriminatory use of political power. and when weighed against each other. then Bill of Rights is considered violated by the government itself (taking into account that in the movie. Government officials and employees did not work as public servants but they acted as the bosses of their constituents. There shall be rampant arbitrary detention. They are here to protect the victims and to make sure that due process is accorded to accused they are arresting. it is obvious that no one is above the law even those who run the government. how could one trust the government to uphold his or her rights if he or she will complain and ask for protection? Bill of Rights will be disregarded as if there is no such thing in the Philippines. 176389. should circumstances in the movie will happen here in the Philippines. This bundle of rights guarantees the preservation of our natural rights which include personal liberty and security against invasion by the government or any of its branches or instrumentalities. In a separate concurring opinion of Justice Sereno in the case of People of the Philippines versus Antonio Lejano (GR No. December 14. The government is not there to oppress the law but they are there to uphold the law instead.” In this discussion. The Philippine constitution states that civilian authority overrides the military in all functions. more whimsical and capricious treatment of cases especially criminal cases and tortures be enjoyed by anybody in position. The . Thus. 2010). relief may be availed of to stop the purported enforcement of criminal law where it is necessary to provide for an orderly administration of justice. The fundamental law of the land is of no use or becomes inutile. the scales of justice tilt towards the former. there shall be miscarriage of justice. it is the government of South Africa are the ones promoting apartheid governance). What happened in the movie where the accused were tortured and killed by the security enforces are acts of extrajudicial killings. the Bill of Rights takes precedence over the right of the State to prosecute. The role of the armed forces is to be a protector of the Filipino people and the state and not to put the laws into their hands. in the hierarchy of rights. It is not part of the job of the law enforcers to torture or even to land their hands to any of the people they are taking into their custody. Circumstances in the movie Cry Creed is a concrete example of violation of our Bill of Rights. They became selective of who to protect. protected and enforced.” – Justice J. those rights are already existing and there is no law needed to give such rights to him/her and there is no way that those rights will also be taken from him or her. these rights are inalienable and personal. . The role of the laws of the land is to provide rules on how these rights be treated. government authorities became the number one violators of the rights of their people especially the black South Africans. The Bill of Rights contains the human rights and as stated in the first paragraph. There was absence of equality among men and there was no real public service rendered. vs Lejano.government failed to uphold the rights of all their constituents. Sereno in his Separate Concurring Opinion in the case of Pp. Meaning. Measures or rules are needed because rights should be exercised with precaution that others people’s rights cannot be violated when exercising one’s rights. 2010). “While we greatly applaud their determined efforts to weed society of felons. This means that once the the individual has come to life. Instead. you cannot exercise your rights at the expense of others. December 14. let not their impetuous eagerness violate constitutional precepts which circumscribe the structure of a civilized community.