The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) calls on the international community to step up diplomatic and economic efforts to pressure the Chinese government to comply with its international obligations and sanction its officials for trampling on outstanding agreements and instruments and compel it to respect the sovereignty of other nations.
The Party urges the international community to expand on the initiatives last week by the US government to blacklist Chinese firms and individuals involved in land reclamation and construction of at least seven military facilities in the South China Sea, particularly those within the Philippine exclusive economic zone (EEZ). These have been determined illegal by the 2016 judgment of the Permanent Arbitration Court in line with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas.
These companies include the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), the CCC Dredging Group, China Shipbuilding Group, the CCCC’s China Harbor Engineering Company (CHEC), the China Electronics Technology Group Corporation and other subsidiary companies. The CCCC is the successor organization of the China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) which was determined by the World Bank in 2009 to have engaged in fraudulent practices in the Philippines and was consequently sanctioned. These companies are mainly state-owned or are in collusion with the Chinese government.
The widespread destruction of coral reefs and marine life in the Philippine EEZ in the course of their land reclamation and construction constitute a grave violation of Philippine sovereignty. In addition, Chinese fishing companies continue to wantonly engage in harvesting substantial amounts of sea turtles and giant clams, aside from large quantities of fish catch, denying vast marine resources to Filipino fishermen.
Many of these companies are also engaged in various other projects i under Duterte’s Build, Build, Build infrastructure program. It was revealed recently that the Duterte regime has five memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the CCCC for projects in Manila, Davao, Cebu and Clark. The CCCC is also involved in the Sangley Point International Airport project, in a joint venture with MacroAsia Corp. owned by Duterte crony Lucio Tan. Duterte ordered the fast-tracking of the Sangley Point project last year. Top Duterte crony Dennis Uy, meanwhile, is engaged with the CHEC for a $1.2 billion reclamation project.
The Filipino people must unite and demand that these companies be made to pay for their gross violations of Philippine sovereignty. They must demand the Philippine government to deny these companies from engaging in economic activities in the country. Any and all existing contracts with these companies must be immediately scrapped and investigated. At the same time, the Party urges solidarity within the international community, specifically between the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia and other neighboring countries whose sovereignties are likewise being impinged upon by China’s efforts to dominate the South China Sea.
Condemn Duterte’s continuing national treachery
By causing grave damage to the Philippine marine environment, China should be sued by the Philippine government before the international courts for transgression of Philippine sovereign rights and be required to withdraw and pay compensation for environmental damage and unpaid rent of its military bases. The computed compensation is far more than what Duterte has actually gotten from China’s promise of high-interest loans of $24 billion for overpriced infrastructure projects done by Chinese contractors and workers.
For four years now, the Duterte regime has failed to use the 2016 favorable judgment under UNCLOS to the advantage of the country, refusing to bring it up within the ASEAN, the UN or in the international community at large. Instead, in exchange for China’s favors, Duterte has allowed China to continue building up its military power in the West Philippine Sea and preventing Filipino fishermen from fishing in their own sea.
It is downright treacherous and a display of absolute lack of national dignity for the Duterte regime to continue dealing with Chinese companies which have been proven to have violated Philippine sovereign rights. Duterte’s claim that the country urgently needs the capital that these blacklisted Chinese companies will bring in is utterly false, because in fact, the country’s resources which these Chinese companies have destroyed and plundered and accumulated is far greater.
In the course of peace negotiations between the GRP and NDFP up to 2017, the NDFP Negotiating Panel and its Chief Political Consultant repeatedly expressed to the GRP Negotiating Panel and Duterte himself that by all necessary and appropriate means the sovereign and maritime rights of the Philippines over the exclusive economic zone and extended continental shelf in the West Philippine Sea must be asserted, exercised and defended in accordance with the final 2016 judgment of the Permanent Arbitration Court and United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas.
The revolutionary forces and the Filipino people have the utmost interest in upholding the sovereign rights of the Filipino people over EEZ and ECS of the West Sea and in demanding that the people avail of the rich marine resources conservatively estimated at around USD 1 trillion and the even richer oil and gas resources estimated at $26 trillion in the EEZ.
Duterte, however, ignored the possibility and opportunity of using these funds for economic and social development through a common program of land reform and national industrialization and for expansion of social services in health, education, housing and public cultural facilities. Such a program was put forward by the NDFP as the basis for a just peace.
Instead, Duterte offered China a lopsided “joint ownership” and “joint exploration” deal which would have given China virtual control of these resources even when a better deal could be negotiated with Norway or other technology-leaders in undersea exploration and development.
Duterte’s refusal to heed the people’s demand to uphold national sovereignty by continuing to favor and cooperate with these plunderous Chinese companies in exchange for political support and personal financial gains is equivalent to collusion with a foreign power. His regime of national treachery must not be allowed to rule any longer.
The CPP condemns Duterte in the plainest terms as utterly corrupt, stupid and arrogant. But beyond his personal characteristics, he is an incorrigible traitor, tyrant, plunderer, murder maniac and swindler whose greed for power and personal wealth knows no limit for violating the rights and interests of the Filipino people. Only by overthrowing this monster and his gang of cronies, bureaucratic sycophants and military servants can the people hope to obtain justice, freedom and a better life.