On this International Labor Day, let us broaden our unity and resolve to advance the national liberation of the Filipino people from foreign and domestic exploiters and oppressors

Rev. Fr. Neo Padre Aglipay | Spokesperson | Christians for National Liberation-Northern Luzon | Christians for National Liberation (CNL) | National Democratic Front of the Philippines
May 01, 2021
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Let us contemplate this May 1, the International Labor Day, on how the Filipino toiling masses have been deprived and continue to be depressed in endless sufferings and miseries because of the totalitarianism by the anti-labor and anti-poor U.S. Duterte Regime (USDR). For already half a decade now since the 2016 national elections, this tyrant regime has not at all manifested itself as a patriotic and democratic government. All throughout it has not worked for the economic, political and cultural betterment of the Filipino people, especially the welfare and security of the workers, semi-proletariat and urban poor, peasants, fisherfolks, national minorities, small transport owners and drivers, and other informal sectors. After deceivingly calling himself as the “first leftist and socialist” president, pretending to be an anti-U.S. imperialist leader and after welcoming militant activists inside Malacahang, Duterte and his pro-U.S. imperialist AFP-PNP top commanders have declared a de facto martial law under the ploy of war on drugs and anti-terrorism, and have killed the peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). In fact, they have continued up to this day procuring U.S. imperialist military assistance and surplus weapons which Duterte and his military minions have been and are using to terrorize and kill countless Filipinos, destroy Marawi City, bombard peasant communities and national minority territories, while freely allowing U.S. transnational capitalist firms to continue to get superprofits from cheap labor and low-cost raw materials of our country.

And while following the dictates of their U.S. imperialist masters that maintain the Philippines as a semicolonial and semifeudal society, tyrant Duterte, his co-ruling class of big landlord-comprador sycophants and his co-terrorist AFP-PNP top commanders have promiscuously befriended the Chinese imperialist power in order to get huge loans with high interests for their Build, Build, Build (BBB) projects, even consenting to the big Chinese capitalist corporations to become project contractors and bring in Chinese laborers with high wages in autocrat Duterte’s BBB projects despite the increasing and continuing unemployment among Filipino workers. Moreover, due to the fact that they have amassed and continue to accumulate enormous corruptions from Chinese investment contracts, loans and vaccines, totalitarian Duterte, his minions of big bureaucrat capitalists and his co-terrorists in the DND and AFP just let imperialist China freely continue its economic and military interventionism in the rich West Philippine Sea (WPS). And instead of condemning imperialist China’s economic and military incursion in the WPS, protecting the national sovereignty and integrity of the Philippine territory, and safeguarding the security of the country from any external threats, tyrant Duterte and his top terrorist and pro-U.S. imperialist AFP-PNP commanding officers continue to implement their Anti-Terrorism Law (ATL) through widespread acts of terrorism, dictatorship, red-tagging, crimes of murder, treason, the suppression of the Filipino people’s basic freedoms and democratic rights, and other countless human rights violations (HRVs) under the pretext of their terrorist National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).

And who are the victims of the innumerable HRVs of autocrat Duterte and his terrorist regime? They are the exploited and oppressed Filipino people who comprise the majority of the population. Most especially, the workers, semi-proletariat and urban poor, peasants, fisherfolks, the women, the youth and national minorities have become the victims of the tyrannical USDR. Included victims of killer Duterte and his terrorist AFP-PNP top commanders are the HR defenders and activists from the sectors of the youth and students, teachers, health workers, lawyers, media and artists, Church people, government employees, enlightened politicians and government officials, and other intelligentsia who support the struggle of the exploited and oppressed majority.

And what bases do we have to proclaim that all throughout the past 5 years tyrant Duterte and his minions have done nothing for the economic, political and cultural betterment of the Filipino people, especially the welfare and security of the workers, semi-proletariat and urban poor, peasants, fisherfolks, other informal sectors, the women, the youth and national minorities? The continuing chronic problems of landlessness, poverty, hunger, malnutrition, unemployment, low wage, contractualization and other anti-labor laws, inflation, lack of government assistance for the increase of food production and the improvement of health security, and other socio-economic, political and cultural glitches are concrete manifestations of the total failure and neglect of autocrat Duterte and his totalitarian regime in responding to the needs and welfare of the exploited and oppressed Filipino people amidst the enormous economic wealth and boundless tyrannical power in the hands of the few rich ruling classes, led by number-one killer Duterte. And such continuing chronic problems, that affect daily and greatly the exploited and oppressed Filipino masses, have been and are continually being exacerbated by the regime’s corruption; increase of the salaries and benefits of the fascist AFP-PNP; huge foreign loans (P10.2 trillion as of November 2020) and payment of foreign debts; importation of food and other agricultural products that only benefit big business importers but greatly destroy the businesses of local producers whose productions (for example local hog raising) should have been subsidized by government; extravagant military spending especially the procurement of drones and bomber planes, bombs, and other high-powered armaments in the name of “AFP modernization”, increase of intelligence funds, enormous amounts uselessly spent for the corrupt-laden Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP), Enhanced-Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) and Barangay Development Program (BDP); and other corrupt practices such as the procurement of grossly overpriced medical equipments, personal protective equipments (PPE) and Covid-19 testing kits, and the like.

Instead of properly resolving the aforesaid worsening and continuing chronic problems that daily confront the exploited and oppressed Filipino masses, tyrant Duterte and all his co-bureaucrat capitalist minions in Congress have passed bills such as the Rice Tarrification Law (RTL), the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act, the Philippine Program for Recovery with Equity and Solidarity (PH-PROGRESO), the Tax Reform for Attracting Better and Higher Quality Opportunities (TRABAHO) Bill which became the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA) and the new Corporate Recovery, and the Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Bill. All these are but neoliberal reforms and policies that favor foreign capitalists and the big landlordcomprador oligarchs for the preservation of the semicolonial and semifeudal features of the country.

It is this whole continuing control of the national economy by the foreign capitalists and the big landlord-comprador oligarchs who, dictated by U.S. imperialism, are themselves the big bureaucrat capitalists in the reactionary government, defended by the terrorist AFP-PNP top commanders, that has made our country to remain as having a very backward agricultural and non-industrial economy. It is this entire unjust economic and political set-up that maintains poverty, landlessness, unemployment, low wage, inflation, inequality and underdevelopment in the Philippines. And these socio-economic problems are not due to the CPP-NPANDFP, as claimed by tyrant Duterte, his powerful co-oligarchs and his terrorist AFP-PNP top commanders in the NTF-ELCAC, IATF and ATL council. In fact, said continuing exploitative and oppressive system — that continues to make the workers, peasants, the national minorities, the informal sectors and other lowly democratic classes suffer in chronic poverty and iniquity — is worsened and can never be resolved by NTF-ELCAC and its P19 billion that is supposedly for the BDP of 822 barangays, which are mostly found in the regions controlled by autocrat Duterte. Such amount will only go to the pockets of Duterte’s terrorist and corrupt minions.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic last year, the woes and agonies of the exploited and oppressed Filipino people have aggravated and continue to worsen due to autocrat Duterte’s prolonged lockdown and the terroristic AFP-PNP restrictions, prioritized by killer Duterte’s fascist troops to “prevent” supposedly the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. And because killer Duterte and his pro-U.S. imperialist AFP-PNP top commanders have put under de facto Martial Law the whole country through their NTFELCAC, their Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and their ATL, they and their cohorts in Congress have not prioritized to give enough support from the P4.5 trillion national budget to fully develop the healthcare sector for a comprehensive prevention of the spread of Covid-19 and the treatment of those infected. Thus as a whole, they have failed to upraise hospital bed capacities and sufficient quarantine facilities; they have not procured enough supplies of PPEs, swabbing kits, and vaccines for all the Filipino people. And because vaccines are not enough and are being obtained with long delays and intervals, free mass vaccinations have not been accelerated especially for the health personnel and the economic frontliners of peasants, fisherfolks and workers in agriculture, transport enterprises and other industries; and correct containment measures especially by means of organized and intensive virus tracing and mass testing have neither been broadened nor strengthened because those subservient followers of killer Duterte continue to impose the IATF’s policy of lockdown and militarist restrictions and the implementation of NTF-ELCAC.

However, the aforementioned economic frontliners, who should be given free swab tests, cannot afford for themselves and their family members swab test payments that range from P1,500 to as high as P5,000 for a reliable individual swab test whose result is known within 3-5 days in many hospitals and testing centers here in Northern Luzon as well as in Central Luzon. Major reasons why they cannot afford swab test payments are due to joblessness, unemployment and low wages for those who are able to find unstable jobs during some days of the week, and because economic activities and travels are very much restricted by autocrat Duterte’s lockdowns and militarist restrictions. And while there is no formal declaration yet if workers, semi-proletariat and urban poor, peasants, fisherfolks and struggling national minorities will be given free vaccinations, Duterte and his minions are proudly projecting themselves as benevolent patrons by distributing insufficient amount from the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) to only a few of the many most indigent families, and have been and are continually restricting economic activities by their lockdown measures and military-police restrictions which have greatly added to the continuing increase of joblessness and unemployment, and which have not, in fact, contained the fast Covid-19 outbreaks, active cases and casualties that daily increase nationwide.

Killer Duterte’s despotic followers have inhumanly treated and intimidated those who seek the aid of community pantries and have red-tagged community pantry organizers, but have not ordered the local government units (LGUs) to support organized, “disciplined” and extensive community pantries, and have failed to provide adequate support to the more than 10 million vulnerable households of workers, semi-proletariat and urban poor, peasants, fisherfolks, indigent national minorities and other informal sectors who everyday suffer in poverty and hunger. Instead, tyrant Duterte, his terrorist minions and his pro-U.S. imperialist AFPPNP top commanders have imposed to and continue to mandate all LGUs to implement their NTF-ELCAC pipedream and its terrorist objectives. Autocrat Duterte’s fascist minions in the IATF and NTF-ELCAC have, in fact, become PERSONA NON GRATA to the Filipino people. They even refuse up to now to listen to the call of Senators and other lawmakers, whom Gen. Parlade has shamelessly denounced as “stupid”, to redirect billions of the people’s money — being spent uselessly in the counter-insurgency and combat, intelligence and civil-military operations; and being used in the NTF-ELCAC’s corrupt-laden RCSP, E-CLIP and BDP. Such public funds should be used for the development of genuine agrarian reforms and sufficient financial assistance to the struggling businesses, especially the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME), all of which have been hit hard by the imposed lockdowns and the military-police restrictions, and which should become major keys to recover and increase food production, and stabilize regular employment among the Filipino toiling masses.

There is no other way but for the Filipino people to continue determinedly the National Democratic Revolution (NDR) through protracted people’s war in order to achieve national freedom for the working class, the peasantry and other democratic sectors and classes to be liberated from the exploitation and oppression of the terrorist, corrupt, treasonous, plunderous, human rights violator, tyrant and killer USDR. On this International Labor Day, let us resolutely reverberate the call especially for the workers, the youth and the intelligentsia to join the New People’s Army (NPA), the peasants and national minorities in the countrysides in order to advance the NDR and the people’s war to higher stages. Responding to this call would be very significant to intensify the armed struggle, advance the agrarian revolution as foundation for the start of national industrialization, build and strengthen the mass base and the local organs of political power in order to constitute the people’s democratic government which would overthrow the reactionary state in due time and pave the road towards a bright socialist future of the Filipino people.

But while advancing the NDR through people’s war for national liberation, it behooves that we must support the call of the toiling masses of workers and peasants to raise to P10,000 the social amelioration for all the jobless and indigent families, give P100 subsidy per day/person to all labourers and farm workers, and increase wage to 750. Moreover, we must broaden and strengthen our unity, and launch courageously in various regional-urban centers and at the national level the parliament of the streets in order to oust killer Duterte and his terrorist followers even before the 2022 national elections. The victory of the oust tyrant Duterte movement shall certainly become an essential and great preparation for the success of the forthcoming 2022 national elections in order to freely choose proven and servant leaders at the national and local levels, who shall then establish a truly patriotic and democratic government, and shall support the resumption of the GRP and NDFP peace negotiations for the resolution of the root causes of the ongoing armed conflict and the achievement of the Filipino people’s aspirations for a just and lasting peace.

We fervently pray and ask you — the rank-and-file men and women as well as the junior officers in the AFP-PNP — to disobey the orders of your terrorist and pro-U.S. imperialist AFP-PNP top commanders who may sabotage the oust Duterte movement by harassing and killing activists and leaders of the mass movement as well as those of the various anti-Duterte opposition groups. Majority of you are sons and daughters of families whose origins come from the exploited and oppressed masses of workers, peasants and national minorities. Disobeying your fascist AFP-PNP top commanders and the tyrant commander-in-chief is your best expression of your fundamental right and patriotic duty to respect and defend the human rights of the exploited and oppressed Filipino masses, the democratic and civil rights of social activists and human rights defenders, and the sovereign rights of our nation to become truly independent and democratic.###

On this International Labor Day, let us broaden our unity and resolve to advance the national liberation of the Filipino people from foreign and domestic exploiters and oppressors