As Duterte is expected to meet with Indonesian President Joko Widodo in Bali today for the ASEAN Leaders’ Gathering, Migrante underscored the urgent need of discussing the case of Mary Jane Veloso as the OFW group is also monitoring the two other Filipina drug trafficking victims imprisoned in Indonesia.
Migrante International spokesperson Arman Hernando said, “On the back of having other Filipina victims of drug trafficking detained in Indonesia, it is all the more necessary for Duterte to explain to Jokowi the case of Mary Jane Veloso and finally allow her to testify against the international drug and human traffickers who victimized her.”
Even if the sentence on the other Filipina victim in Semarang was only life imprisonment, Migrante is adamant that Mary Jane’s testimony is crucial in setting the precedent to help all the victims of the international drug syndicates.
The group likewise revealed that the Indonesian government was surprised that despite the admission on Mary Jane’s innocence by trafficking suspects Maria Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao, their conviction remains to be seen after the Court of Appeals junked Mary Jane’s right to deposition.
Relating his recent prison visit to Mary Jane in Indonesia last month, Arman Hernando said, “the Indonesian government is asking why it’s taking so long for Philippine authorities to hand down a conviction against traffickers Sergio and Lacanilao and why Mary Jane is still not allowed to testify.”
Hernando does not see Duterte’s seriousness in completely vanquishing the machinery of international drug and human trafficking syndicates.
“The Duterte government’s negligence in securing justice for Mary Jane and for the other trafficking victims perpetuates the privilege and immunity of big drug lords and traffickers. In fact, another Filipina drug trafficking victim is currently detained in a penitentiary right there in Bali where President Duterte is currently attending the ASEAN Leader’s meeting,” Hernando lamented.
President Duterte is set to return back to the Philippines tonight after the conclusion of the ASEAN Leaders’ event.