Memorandum No. 2022-0663 dated August 9, 2022 of the Komsiyon ng Wikang Filipino (KWF) banning five (5) books in Filipino as “subversive” is a liquidation of the freedom of expression which is enshrined and protected by the Bill of Rights, according to Rep. Edcel C. Lagman, the lone authentic opposition in the House of Representatives.
Lagman underscored that “as patent thought control and unmitigated censorship, the memorandum is an outlaw which must be slain on sight.”
The Albay solon will be asking for a joint hearing in aid of legislation by the Committees on Human Rights, Basic Education and Culture, and Higher and Technical Education on this unlawful memorandum.
Under R.A. No. 7104 which established the Commission on the Filipino Language, the Commission (KWF) has no power whatsoever to ban and censor written works in Filipino.
Its principal mandate is “to ensure and promote the evolution and development and further enrichment of Filipino as the national language of the Philippines, on the basis of existing Philippine and other languages.”
Moreover, Lagman stated the KWF is not an adjunct of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), which is the dominant red-tagging agency of the government.
He added that neither is the KWF an extension of the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC), which is tasked to implement the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 or R.A. No. 11479.
Lagman said that the action of the KWF of banning the subject books for purportedly violating Section 9 of R.A. No. 11479 or inciting to commit terrorism “is an unwarranted sanction by an unauthorized agency without trial and due process.”
EDCEL C. LAGMAN