With the abduction of two youth organizers—closely followed by the red-tagging of community pantries—Rodrigo Duterte bares his regime’s panic to deny its neglect in handling the pandemic and alleviating the economic crisis.
Yesterday, agents of Duterte’s National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) forcibly took Anakbayan members Alicia Lucena and Sofia Bangayan under the pretext of a “randomized” swab testing. Sofia was since sent home to her family despite insisting otherwise; while Alicia is being held by her mother Relissa, a figurehead for Hands Off Our Children (HOOC)—an organization under NTF-ELCAC dedicated to manipulating private familial conflicts to red-tag youth activists and spread state-sponsored fake news.
Kabataang Makabayan is disgusted by the lengths the regime would go to in order to try and salvage what is left of its rotting rule. Using free swab testing—a semblance to the people’s demands for medical solutions amid the rising number of Covid-19 cases—to abduct youth organizers is an affront to the masses’ struggle for their rights under the pandemic.
Instead of tending to the tangible needs and pleas of the people, the regime is weaponizing its militarist pandemic response to intensify the crackdown on patriotic youth and masses and further terrorize the ever-narrowing democratic space afforded to them by a fascist tyrant.
Duterte spins excuses after excuses and lies upon lies when held responsible for the plight of the masses but misses not one beat when presented with another opportunity to jeopardize their rights and lives.
Another recent victim of the state’s vicious assault on the people’s democracy are the community pantries that are now being subjected to red-tagging and harassment.
The NTF-ELCAC has displayed undue effort in discrediting these community pantries by linking them to communist groups. Also, members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other fascist elements of the state have started circling these locations and baselessly demanding the identity of the organizers and having volunteers list their names—several of whom reported feeling harassed or threatened by the police’s presence.
An initiative that was essentially driven by the state’s criminal neglect and inaction, the community pantry is a mere reflection of the people’s lack of trust in the regime. It attests to the level of inutility and failure that Duterte has manifested. It is evident to the Filipino people that the state can no longer be expected to resolve their worsening suffering.
Indeed, these stunts only show exactly how far gone the Duterte regime is that the only move it can arrive at now is attempting to dismantle and strike down the people’s collective efforts at demanding accountability while they endeavor to survive by means of their own initiatives.
In the face of heightened attacks by this tottering regime, it is imperative that the people mount even bigger protests and collective actions to force the terrorist Duterte out.
All patriotic youth and masses must mobilize to demand an immediate end to the state’s attacks against the youth and the toiling masses. Community pantries must be used to further raise the people’s unity for their democracy and against Duterte’s fascist terror. More than mutual economic aid, the masses must unite to topple the regime that delivered them to this agony.
Kabataang Makabayan calls on the youth and masses to join revolutionary mass organizations and forward the national democratic revolution. So long as the reactionary state stands to defend the semicolonial and semifeudal system that places the ruling few at the seat of power, the crisis is only set to deepen. Wield the people’s collective power to overthrow the oppressive and exploitative class!
Stop the attacks against the youth!
Make Duterte pay for his regime’s abuse and neglect!
Frustrate Duterte’s fascist terror!
Oust Duterte now!