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Philippines worst in impunity in global index

September 22, 2017 ·  By Rappler.com for www.rappler.com

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The Philippines’ high impunity index is indicative of the country ‘going through one of its most critical moments, due to the increase of violence related with organized crime and increased terrorist activities from local gangs linked to the Islamic State (ISIS)’

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MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines is seen as the worst in terms of impunity in 2017, according to results from the latest Global Impunity Index (GII) of the University of the Americas Puebla (UDLAP) and the Center of Studies on Impunity and Justice (CESIJ).

Not to be confused with the impunity index of the Committee to Protect Journalists, which is specific to the journalism profession, the GII tries “to make visible, in quantitative terms, the impunity worldwide and its direct effect in other global issues such as inequality, corruption, and violence.”

The 2017 GII, released in August, studied 69 countries, with 124 other countries that are Member States of the United Nations not part of the index due to a “lack of sufficient information on security and justice to compare them with other countries included in the Index.”

In its description of the Philippines, the GII said the high impunity index is indicative of the country “going through one of its most critical moments, due to the increase of violence related with organized crime and increased terrorist activities from local gangs linked to the Islamic State (ISIS).”

According to the GII, countries with high rates of impunity “can lead to socioeconomic inequality, legal inequality, rule-of-law problems, insufficient economic development, difficulties to attract foreign investment and tourism, as well an increase in human rights violations.”

Structural, functional, and human rights dimensions

The GII assigns a numerical value to the structural, functional, and human rights dimensions surrounding impunity.

GLOBAL IMPUNITY INDEX DIMENSIONS. An explanation of the structural, functional, and human rights dimensions of the Global Impunity Index. Screen shot from Global Impunity Index.

GLOBAL IMPUNITY INDEX DIMENSIONS. An explanation of the structural, functional, and human rights dimensions of the Global Impunity Index. Screen shot from Global Impunity Index.

The structural dimension “measures the installed capacities of a State to prosecute crimes and deliver justice though procedures respectful of due process.” Meanwhile, the functional dimension “measures the performance of the institutions in charge of prosecuting crimes and delivering justice, regardless of their legal framework.”

The Index added, “the structural dimension refers to the installed capacities as a way to measure the commitment of States to counter impunity, whereas the functional dimension focuses on the actual results of the functioning and institutional organization in each country.”

Meanwhile, the human rights dimension “focuses on the physical integrity of citizens.”

The measure of this is when the government protects physical integrity “by analyzing cases of torture, homicides perpetrated by public officials, political imprisonment, extrajudicial killings, massive homicides, and disappearances.”

While the Philippines is relatively middling in terms of functional security and justice, with scores of 44.64 and 42.64, it has issues when it comes to structural security and justice at 94.07 and 99.07. This points to a lack of manpower, and an average ability to enact and deliver justice.

In terms of the human rights dimension, the Philippines has a 97.99 rating, which points to a lack in the government’s drive to analyze and understand the human rights situation in the country. – Rappler.com

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