By Trisha Macas
Source: GMA News
Malacañang on Tuesday announced that 4,000 of around 75,000 Martial Law victims during the dictatorship of late strongman Ferdinand Marcos would soon receive a portion of their claims from the Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board (HRVCB).
The release of claims will come after the HRVCB received P300 million from the Bureau of Treasury for the partial monetary reparation. HRVCB has already written to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for the release of the amount.
“The HRVCB and its resolutions committed to distribute 50 percent of the total estimated reparation value due to the first 4,000 eligible claimants consisting of 2,661 conclusively presumed victims and 1,339 new applicants,” presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said in a briefing.
“The claims board following the point system prescribed the reparation law which came up with a total of 23,567 points to be awarded to the first batch of claimants,” he added, referring to the point system that would determine how much each claimant would get.
Based on the point system stated in the reparation law, the Claims Board noted that 23,567 points are to be awarded to the first batch of claimants, with every one point equivalent to P25,000 rounded up.
This brings the total reparation value to P589 million for the first batch of claimants alone.
After meeting with the Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) in January, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered concered agencies and officials to expedite the release the compensation for Martial Law victims.
SELDA sought Duterte’s assistance since Martial Law victims have yet to receive recognition and compensation four years since Republic Act No. 10368 or the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013 was passed.
According to the reparation law, the Board will follow the point system for the determination of the award:
- Victims who died or who disappeared and are still missing shall be given 10 points;
- Victims who were tortured and/or raped or sexually abused shall he given six to nine points;
- Victims who were detained shall be given three to five points; and
- Victims whose rights were violated under Section 3, paragraph (b), nos. (4), (5) and (6) of RA No. 10368 shall be given one to two points
While the HRCVB has already approved 4,000 claims, around 75,000 claimants are still waiting for their reparation to be resolved. The HRCVB has only until May 12, 2018 to complete the reparation process of all claimants.