The broad masses of the Filipino people, all their patriotic and democratic forces, the political opposition and various sectors must firmly unite, gear for and resist the scheme of the Duterte fascist regime to rig the upcoming midterm elections.
Duterte needs to rig the upcoming midterm elections because his senatorial candidates in the Hugpong ng Pagbabago and PDP-Laban have no chances of winning in fair elections. They are widely discredited as his agents and lackeys, and are notorious for their corruption, bloody record in mass killings and martial law, involvement in the illegal drug trade and treachery to the country’s patrimony and national sovereignty.
Various sectors consider the upcoming midterm elections as an opportunity to express the people’s grievances against the Duterte regime and an additional arena of struggle to resist Duterte’s tyranny and push for his ouster.
The only chance that Duterte’s candidates will dominate the senate race is by rigging the elections. Driven by his ambition to put all branches of the Philippine government (especially the Philippine Senate) under his control, push forward with his charter change scheme for pseudo-federalism to mask his dictatorial plans and perpetuate his bureaucrat capitalist rule, Duterte is determined to do everything to see the results of the upcoming elections go his favor.
Duterte’s campaign managers have manufactured surveys and bombarded broadcast, print and social media with ads and paid influencers, and have employed Red-tagging and counterfeit narco-listing against political oppositionists to make it appear that his candidates are set to win the elections. Military and police forces have been deployed across the country and are openly campaigning against anti-Duterte forces across Mindanao and in so-called hot spots. Duterte has control of the Comelec and its non-transparent and insecure electronic vote counting system. It has disenfranchised and disempowered electoral watchdogs.
The upcoming midterm elections is about to become one of the dirtiest in Philippine history. Duterte will have to commit massive electoral fraud if he wants to have commanding control of the Senate, as well as majority control of the House of Representatives. Bolstered by his false electoral victory, Duterte will carry out more brutal suppression against the people.
Widespread cheating to favor Duterte’s candidates are bound to spark wide-scale public outrage and mass protests. The conditions are becoming ever favorable for the united front of various anti-tyranny forces to further expand, strengthen and become bolder in fighting Duterte and demanding his ouster.
As Duterte prepares to commit massive cheating, these forces must be ready to draw in the broadest possible range of groups and individuals to help expose and oppose electoral fraud, in addition to such outstanding issues as Duterte’s unexplained wealth, dictatorial ambitions, overlordship and involvement in the drug trade, mass killings, rights abuses and brutalities in his all-out war, sell-out to China, servility to the US military, and so on.
Duterte relentlessly employs Red-baiting, threats and intimidation, promises of reform, political accommodation and other duplicitous methods to weaken the resolve of the people and drive a wedge among the various forces ranged against his tyranny and authoritarian schemes. They must unite more firmly in order to withstand the regime’s tactics to divide the broad opposition forces.
They must be able to put forward a united stand in order to inspire and embolden the Filipino people to act and rise up in their numbers. By manifesting broad unity, they can further draw in the more decent elements in the bureaucracy, military and police to support the people’s struggle against the Duterte regime, and persuade his imperialist masters to drop him soon lest their strategic interests be pulled down together with Duterte’s imminent fall.
The worsening crisis under the Duterte regime is undermining the entire ruling system. The rottenness of the semicolonial and semifeudal system, including the reactionary elections, is being laid bare. The national democratic forces must continue to arouse, organize and mobilize the Filipino people, especially the workers and peasants, and other democratic sectors.
The mass-oriented organizations, alliances and party-list groups must do their utmost to wage widespread anti-imperialist, anti-feudal and antifascist mass struggles and help further strengthen the people’s united front against the Duterte fascist regime.
The New People’s Army (NPA) must mount tactical offensives against the fascist military units especially those which have been committing gross abuses, including those which have been deployed across the country to being used by Duterte to rig the upcoming elections. They must continue to wage revolutionary armed struggle and take advantage of the situation to advance extensive and intensive guerrilla warfare across the country and continue to carry forward the people’s war.