A Filipino professor has been nominated to the United Nations Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment for 2012 to 2016.
In a letter dated August 10, 2012, the Department of Foreign Affairs-Philippine Mission to the United Nations said it is honored to submit, through the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the candidature of Ms. June Caridad Pagaduan Lopez for membership in the UN Sub-committee on the Prevention of Torture (SPT).
Dr. Pagaduan-Lopez, is a professor at the Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of the Philippines-Manila and one of the founding members of the Medical Action Group (MAG).
The MAG welcomed Dr. Lopez’s nomination to the SPT.
“We are convinced that Dr. Lopez will make an immediate positive contribution to the mandate and function of the UN body. She was selected as the nominee of the Philippines to the SPT in view of her outstanding commitment and achievements in linking her profession as a psychiatrist to the promotion and defense of human rights particularly the prevention of torture and the rehabilitation of torture victims in the country,” MAG said.
Dr. Lopez has 30 years as an undergraduate and postgraduate educator in medical school and public health school (psychiatry, organizational development, occupational and mental health). She finished her medicine at the University of the Philippines-Manila.
She was awarded by Ten Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (TOWNS) in 1989. In 2010, she was awarded Outstanding Achievement Award by the International Council for the Rehabilitation of Torture Victims (IRCT) given by the Dr. Inge Genefke Foundation, Copenhagen, Denmark, during its 25th anniversary celebration.
She was among the 39 recipients of the Most Distinguished Alumnus Award by the University of the Philippines Alumni Association (UPAA) in 2011.
The Philippines became the 63rd State Party to the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT) on April 17, 2012.
Its accession to the OPCAT means that the country as a State Party is eligible to submit a candidate for the SPT.
The SPT has a preventive mandate focused on an innovative, sustained and proactive approach to the prevention of torture and ill treatment.
The SPT started its work in February 2007 with 10 members and expanded to 25 members in January 2011.
It also has an operational role which consists in visiting all places of detention in States parties. The SPT started its work in February 2007 with 10 members and expanded to 25 members in January 2011.
The election of twelve (12) members of the SPT will be held on October 25, 2012, at the United Nations Office at Geneva. — Jerbert Briola /LBG, GMA News