Artists’ group to hold human rights concert on December 9
MANILA, Philippines - Dakila, a group of artists and activists, organizes a concert for human rights advocacies on Saturday, December 9, at the Times Square, Araneta Center, Quezon City.
The free concert – which will run from 4 to 9 pm – will feature performances from Sandwich, Noel Cabangon, BLKD, Aia de Leon, Tanya Markova, Hilera, Cooky Chua, Bayang Barrios and Naliyagan Band, Gary Granada, Flying Ipis, Brass Pas Pas Pas Pas, IV of Spades, Oh! Flamingo, Ourselves the Elves, and spoken word artists Alfonso Manalastas, Louise Meets, Abby Orbeta, and Juan Miguel Severo. The concert will be hosted by TV personality Jun Sabayton.
“Now, more than ever, should we celebrate human rights at this time when democratic institutions and spaces that protect our human rights are under attack and when false news, historical revisionism, and alternate truths are used to drown our rights and freedoms," Dakila executive director Rash Caritativo said in a statement. (READ: Hate human rights? They protect freedoms you enjoy
He said the concert is both a celebration and a protest action. Through music and poetry, the artists will call to uphold, protect, and defend human rights for all.
In October, a European Union report noted that human rights violations in the Philippines had “considerably worsened” in the second half of 2016 as a consequence of President Rodrigo Duterte’s violent war on drugs. (READ: Privacy concerns raised over PNP's human rights app)
Data from the Philippine National Police (PNP) show at least 3,850 people have been killed in police operations while at least 2,290 others were killed mostly by vigilantes. Independent count by human rights organizations cite a much higher number of drug-related killings.
The government, however, consistently denies the existence of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines. (READ: Human rights 'considerably worsened' in first 6 months of Duterte – EU report)
Active Vista executive director and Dakila co-founder Leni Velasco expressed her group’s concern over the situation: “We are again in dark and troubled times. This plethora of human rights abuses mostly hit the poor and vulnerable sectors of our society. Too many acts of injustice are being committed by the State itself, and human rights advocates are being silenced, persecuted, and threatened.”
The Active Vista Human Rights Festival opened on November 22 and featured the Moving Pictures art exhibit, human rights film screenings in theaters, schools and alternative spaces, talks and workshops, and the Tao Po play.
On Saturday, a bike ride shall be held for 12 hours from Nueva Ecija to Quezon City. The arrival of cyclists at the concert grounds will signal the start of the “Alab ng Puso” concert.
The concert is organized through the partnership of Dakila, the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines, and i-Defend. – with reports from Jodesz Gavilan/Rappler