To Roque: NPA ceasefire is for the people, not for Duterte

Marco Valbuena | Chief Information Officer | Communist Party of the Philippines
April 27, 2020

Malacañang spokesperson Harry Roque addressed the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and said, “do not count on the possibility of an extension” and repeated false claims of NPA attacks on government relief work. Allow me to address Mr. Roque:

In the first place, the CPP ceasefire order is not for Duterte. The CPP ceasefire order is for the people. Its objective is to mobilize the NPA, as well as all other revolutionary forces, to help the masses cope with the public health and economic crisis, especially now in the face of the hardships brought about by Duterte’s militarist response to the Covid-19 crisis.
Mr. Roque, the CPP and NPA are not asking nor expecting your boss to declare a ceasefire. We are fully aware that Duterte’s earlier ceasefire was merely a front to hide his real aim of using the Covid-19 to intensify counterinsurgency and advance his militarist agenda.
Despite your boss’ drama, your armed forces did not actually go on ceasefire. Data on the ground prove this. We have released a comprehensive report on the matter. During the weeks following the military lockdown, the AFP deployed its units and conducted combat, intelligence and psywar operations in at least 392 villages in 142 towns across the country. Baril, kanyon at bomba, hindi relief and dala ng AFP.
Ang mga sundalo ng AFP, inutusan na sumugod nang sumugod para maghanap ng NPA. Ipinambala sila sa kanyon. Gumamit pa ng mga fighter jets at helicopter para maghulog ng daan-daang kilong mga bomba. Kailangan daw kasi ng aerial support ang relief work. Ilampung pamilya ang napwersang magbakwit sa Bukidnon, sa Davao de Oro at sa Sarangani. Takot, hindi ginhawa, ang hatid nila sa mga tao. Pahirap din sa mga tao ang pagbabawal sa kanila na magtrabaho sa bukid kahit wala naman doong Covid-19.
Ang ipinagmamalaki mong “relief work” ng AFP, sa totoo, pam-press release lang. Karamihan ngayon ng operation ng AFP sa rural areas ay purely counterinsurgency at walang kinalaman sa Covid-19, pero sinasabing pang-Covid.
As a consequence of relentless combat operations, di maiiwasang magka-engkwentro. At least 16 NPA encampments were raided by the AFP since March; 17 other encounters erupted. The NPA has suffered a number of casualties, although in most cases, the NPA were able to countermaneuver, successfully defend themselves and safely withdraw from the battle site.
Mr. Roque: ang masa ang pinagdidiskitahan ng AFP. Sa Pantukan, 11 magsasaka ang hinuli at dinala sa 1001st brigade camp. Sa Iloilo, 12 magsasakang, kasama ang limang menor de edad, na nangunguha ng pulot ang dinakip ng mga sundalo. Sa Sorsogon, binugbog ang mga magsasaka at kinuha ang kanilang mga cellphone. Nakakahiya ka, Mr. Roque, tinuturan ka pa man ding human rights lawyer, na ipagtanggol ngayon ang counterinsurgency ng AFP.
Your claim that the NPA is attacking relief work or is “stealing” relief goods is pure hogwash. Pareho kayo ng boss mong sinungaling. Ginagamit mong “ebidensya” ang kwentong barbero na “inagaw” ng NPA ang relief goods sa Balangiga, kwentong inimbento ng 8th ID. Napahiya nga sila dahil sabi ng mga upisyal at pulis doon, wala namang ganoong nangyari sa lugar nila. Yes, they later changed their statement to say the NPA only “took a portion,” but only after an 8th ID official attended the Municipal Peace and Order Council meeting, armed men in tow, and himself, put a draft resolution before the meeting for the council to approve. The council members, however, requested that the resolution be toned down because the original draft contained blatant lies which they could not stomach.
Ang hindi mo kasi alam, Mr. Roque, sa tanang kasaysayan ng NPA, hindi nagnakaw ang NPA sa masa. Para sa NPA, napakalaking kasalanan sa mga tao ang kumuha, ika nga, kahit karayum o hibla ng sinulid. Ang baril ng NPA, hindi itinututok sa masa, kundi sa kaaway nila. Through more than 50 years, the NPA has thrived because of the people’s support. Hindi mo rin kasi alam kung papaanong sinusuportahan ng masa ang mga Red fighter ng NPA, dahil sila ay kanila ring mga anak, kanilang mga duktor, titser at tagapagtanggol laban sa pang-aapi.
In the face of the Covid-19, the NPA has mounted a public health campaign. Laman nito ang information drive para hindi matakot ang mga tao sa bayrus at malaman kung papaano itong iiwasan. The NPA is working with local people’s health committees to ensure health policies are observed, including, giving extra care to the elderly, pregnant women and infirm who are vulnerable to the disease. Pinaalalahanan din ang mga tao na sundin ang tamang hygiene at sanitation sa kanilang lugar. Pinaghahanda rin ang mga tao sakaling may madapuan ng Covid-19 sa kanilang baryo. Nakikipagtulungan din ang NPA sa pag-facilitate ng tulong ng ibang mga ahensya, kahit mula sa mga lokal na gubyerno, para makarating sa masa.
Siyempre, ang NPA, walang daan-daang bilyong pisong pondo. Pero lahat ng pwedeng itulong sa tao ay ginagawa ng NPA at ng rebolusyonaryong kilusan.
Kaya naman galit na galit ang mga tao sa boss mo. Dahil hawak na niya ang buong badyet, kinukuripot pa ang mga taong desperadong-desperado na dahil puro lockdown at martial law ang nasa isip. Kahit ang mga nars at duktor, hindi mabigyan ng sapat na proteksyon at nararapat ng pagtaas ng sahod. Palibhasa, utak diktador talaga ang boss mo at unang iniisip ay kung papaanong lalaki pa ang kanyang kurakot at kapangyarihan.

 

The CPP declared a ceasefire from March 26 to April 15, and extended it to April 30, by way of responding to the call of the United Nations for a global ceasefire of all warring parties. Your government and armed forces claimed it too was heeding the global ceasefire call of the UN. It is now up to you to explain to the Secretary General and to the Filipino people why your government has instead heightened counterinsurgency operations resulting in grave hardships and widespread violations of human rights.