DILG praises Manila for declaring Panday Sining persona non grata; Anakbayan called it harassment - The Daily Sentry

DILG praises Manila for declaring Panday Sining persona non grata; Anakbayan called it harassment

The local government of Manila on Friday declared the militant group Panday Sining as “persona non grata” after the group was recently involved in vandalism in Manila.
Composite photos from Civil Relations Service AFP and Twitter 

Meanwhile, Anakbayan spokesman Alex Danday said this marks the first time an activist group is banned in Metro Manila.

Danday said the walls of Manila had always been painted with politicians’ tarpaulins, graffitti and billboards, and yet it is protest art that is targeted by City Hall for exposing societal ills.

This shows that the three Panday Sining members who painted protest art on the concrete posts of the LRT-1 last Nov. 30 were arrested for “expos(ing) government corruption and violence.”

This harassment ­– the senseless persona non grata declaration, the gross violation of civil rights through illegal detention – these are all examples of human rights violations under the de facto martial law of the Duterte regime,” Danday said in a statement.
Alex Danday / Photo from Twitter

On Sunday, The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DOTr) praised the city government of Manila for declaring Panday Sining art group persona non grata.

We congratulate the City of Manila for this clear signal to everyone that it will not further tolerate the defacement of the capital city."

It’s time we help government and that begins by disciplining ourselves. #DisiplinaMuna po. Change starts with us,” DILG spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said in a statement.
DILG spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya / Photo from CNN Philippines

Malaya noted that the local government took 15 years to finally clean the Lagusnilad underpass and more other places to make it more accessible and comfortable for commuters “and yet it took the vandals less than one minute to deface public places.”

What do they spray paint on walls and public places? ‘Join the NPA!’ That is not protest art. That is calling for armed rebellion against the government. That’s advocating anarchy. In truth, these groups are calling for anarchy,” Malaya said.

Last week, DILG chief Eduardo Año ordered the Philippine National Police (PNP) to go after vandals who will disregard the law and deface government properties.

Año clarified that his order is a non-political or apolitical directive.

We live in a democracy. There are many avenues for them to express their opposition. For instance, social media is free and unregulated. They can conduct protest rallies,” he said.

But the moment they deface public places, they are now violating the law. We must draw a line. Otherwise that is no longer democracy. That’s now anarchy,” he added.