Friday, September 21, 2018

MILF: MILF chair Al haj Murad graces 2nd bangsamoro ulama general assembly

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 20): MILF chair Al haj Murad graces 2nd bangsamoro ulama general assembly

IN PHOTO- fr L to R- Sheikh Halifa Nando, Chair of MILF Sharia’h Supreme Court, MILF Chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim, and Maguindanao Esmail “Toto” Mangudadatu Photo courtesy of BTC ComGroup

The Council of Ulama in the Philippines in coordination with various ulama (Islamic Scholar) organizations and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) conducted the 2nd General Assembly of the Bangsamoro Ulama with the Theme: " Unity and Sovereignty " held at the Robinsons Hall, Al Nor, Cotabato City on September 18, 2018.

The assembly was attended by more than 5,000 participants coming from different regions of the country.

Members of the MILF Central Committee were also present with Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim as the keynote speaker.

MILF Chairman Murad presented the salient points of Bangsamoro Organic Law, its challenges and opportunities, and appealed to all participants to support its ratification by registering with the COMELEC and campaign for the yes vote during the plebiscite.

MILF combatants and their families had availed of the 3-day special satellite registration held at Camp Darapanan from September 11 - 13 conducted by COMELEC Central Office, Manila.

The Plebiscite for the ratification of R.A. 11054 (OLBARMM) or known as Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) is on set on January 21, 2018.

After the pprogram, a press conference/briefing by MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim was held where he strongly condemns the bombings in Mindanao recently specifically those in Gen. Santos City, Midsayap, North Cotabato, and Isulan, Sultan Kudarat.

MILF: MILF Condemns Spate of Bombings in Mindanao

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 20): MILF Condemns Spate of Bombings in Mindanao

IN PHOTO- MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim responding to questions from participants during the 2nd Bangsamoro Ulama Conference at Robinsons Hall, Al Nor Complex, Cotabato City

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) condemned the recent bombings in Midsayap, North Cotabato, and General Santos City on September 16, and other bombing incidents in Mindanao that caused the lives of several individuals, and fear among civilian populace and communities.

Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim of the MILF said in a press conference Tuesday in Cotabato City that they together with the peace loving people condemned the bombings.

“We issued a letter of condemnation, kino’-condemn natin ito. Nakikita natin na this is not productive,” Al Haj Murad said.

Speaking at the 2nd Bangsamoro Ulama Conference at Robinsons Hall, Al Nor Complex, Al Haj Muard said, “If you look at what is happening in the Muslim world now, the entire Muslim world is ruined because of this (terror) activities.”

Al Haj Murad said that their position relative to these immoral activities is anchored on the verses of Qur’an, and Sunnah of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) that place highest value on human life, and categorically prohibits terroristic activities specially when directed to innocent people.

Chairman Al Haj Murad urged the public to be vigilant and exercise caution without disrupting the normal flow of life of the people that, he said, is what the terrorists would like to see to create havoc in the life of innocent people.

The MILF has also commanded their forces to investigate in the ground, determine the conspirators and bring these suspects behind the bar of justice.

Al Haj Murad told reporters during the press conference that they do not want these bombing incidents to happen in their communities, hence they will protect the civilian populace against the violent radical groups.

The MILF is also called on the GPH-MILF peace mechanisms to take joint actions to investigate, determine the identities of the perpetrators and bring them to justice.

Al Haj Murad conveyed his sympathy and condolence to the family and friends of the victims of the bombing in Midsayap, and General Santos City that include the August 28 blasts in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat that claimed the lives of civilians; many of them are students and minors with more than 30 injured.

MILF: Prominent Personalities Guest at Bangsamoro and Beyond: A National Conversation

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 21): Prominent Personalities Guest at Bangsamoro and Beyond: A National Conversation

IN PHOTO- fr L to R OPAPP Usec Nabil Tan, Mohagher Iqbal, Chair of the MILF Peace Implementing Panels, and TV Host Ms. Karen Davila

Some members of Bangsamoro Transition Commission(BTC) led by MILF Peace Implementing Panel Chair Mogaher Iqbal, and other prominent personalities were invited at the Bangsamoro and Beyond: A National Conversation held at Dolphy Theater, ABS-CBN, Quezon City hosted by Ms. Karen Davila, a veteran anchor and TV host.

The program was organized by British Council headed by Ms. Tatine G. Faylona, A Conflict and Community Resilience Expert of the British Council which attained their expectation of having 300 participants.

The activity aimed to discuss the beauty of Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) and its relation to socio -economic development that can be possibly provided for the future Bangsamoro, as a develop nation.

Aside from members of the BTC, other invited personalities were from the legislative body of government such as Deputy Speaker for Muslim Affairs, Representative Bai Sandra Sema, Anak Mindanao Executive Director Sitti Jalilah Hataman, Jojie Felicitas Fantoha, CEO of Coffee for Peace, Inc., Marawi City Rescue Team Spokesperson Samira Gutoc and COMELEC Deputy Executive Director for Operations, Atty. Bartolume Dela Cruz Jr.

Iqbal along with Commissioner Atty. Jun Lorena, and Commissioner Atty. Maisara Latiph took turns in describing the beauty of the Bangsamoro Organic Law that will bring forward for an advanced Bangsamoro in the future.

Atty. Lorena intellectually responded to a query from the host on “What kind of representation the President want to have in relation to Bangsamoro Transition Authority?

Atty. Lorena said, “The BTA is really avoiding the entry of people who cannot be working. In the process, there are criteria for selection, and we will try to select the best who can function when we have the bright people that have the experience to govern. And having a good framework in legislation will make the parliament as a working and functional government.

Program Anchor Ms. Davila asked MILF PIP Chair Iqbal, what makes this agreement different and why the MILF is hopeful, and how does it work for the Bangsamoro? The second set of conversation.

In his response, Iqbal stressed that as Bangsamoro, we are dealing only one problem, one people and one aspiration where all things that are not covered by the Tripoli Agreement in 1976, the Jeddah Accord of 1986, the final peace agreement between the government, and the MILF leadership that has been their policy set up before setting the peace negotiation with our counterpart in searching for peaceful solution to the aspiration of their people. And its difference between those agreements, they have the substantial issues like the issue of inclusivity that is translated into a legal document that no one is left out to this government. Meaning, it is inclusive for all.

GPH Peace Implementing Panel USec Nabil Tan said that the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro as an answer to the quest of the Bangsamoro people is a land mark legislation in to address the problems of the land. It embodies not only legal documentd but a social document that meant to address injustices in the past, to accommodate cultures, to be responsive to their faith in the region that embodies everything that will find the succeeding provisions of the law which is stipulated in Preamble of the enacted law passed by the House of Congress.

Commissioner Atty. Latiph was asked about the importance of democratic space where the Filipino people can see that the voters are willing on their own without any threats from local officials.

Commissioner Atty.Latiph emphasized the democratic space is being enriched through exercising their rights to vote especially for the youth involvement in the plebiscite as primary stakeholders. In such, she let the youth participants understand the wisdom why there is that need to change the status quo and the historical piece of legislation is very important.

As she ended, she leaves a challenge to the youth to organize themselves and hold community town hall campaign, and be volunteers of this coming referendum.

MILF: MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Congratulates Students Who Graduated from Memorizing the Noble Qur’an

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 21): MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Congratulates Students Who Graduated from Memorizing the Noble Qur’an


Al Haj Murad Ebrahim, Chairman of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) extends his congratulatory message to 47 Arabic students who passed and graduated from memorizing the Noble Qur’an at the Highest Institute for Qur’an and Sunnah on Thursday, September 20, at Camp Darapanan, Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao.
The said commencement exercises thru the auspices of MILF Committee on Education – Central Committee, Sub-Committee on Noble Qur’an affairs chaired by Sheik Mas-od Ali Lantong.

Chairman Murad offered his prayers to the students that Allah will guide them on the right path and urge the graduates to use their knowledge so that it would become beneficial to fellow Bangsamoro.

“Today these students will finish their course with sacrifices and struggle on memorizing the Noble Qur’an, we congratulated you and we ask Allah to nurture your knowledge that you have gained,” Al haj Murad said.

Al Haj Murad said that the holy Qur’an is the center and the backbone of Moro struggle’s objectives to the right to self-determination.

He also said that studying Qur’an should be part of the priority of every Bangsamoro Muslim to learn.

“Qur’an is our reference in advancing the Bangsamoro cause. Muslim must learn to read and comprehend the meaning of Qur’an because it is the basis of our life, source of our religious affairs, politics, social and economics,” Al Haj Murad explained.

He said it is a big lose for Muslims who fight for the Bangsamoro cause if he or she doesn’t know the meaning of Qur’an.

“Masla a kalugian e ipangimpatayn ningka inunta na diningka bun bisin kasabutan u ngini dalim na ibaninindig bantu,” Al Haj Murad said in local vernacular.

The MILF chair disclosed that the second wave of Moro Jihad started in 1967. The Moro struggle was born due to the oppression of non-believers to the Moro people.

Chairman Al Haj Murad recalled the massacres happened in Carmen, North Cotabato where Muslim are the victims - women, children alike, old and young. Similar massacres also took place in the areas of Palimbang in Sultan Kudrat province, Lanao and Sulu areas.

“Hundreds of thousands of Muslims died. We don’t have any option but to fight so that we can survive. During that time, we have only few weapons and most of these arms were improvised,” he disclosed.

Al Haj Murad remembered when Moro warriors were sent to Afghanistan for combat training, he revealed that some of the Moro commanders cannot read the Qur’an which prompted the departed 1st Amirul Mujahideen Sheik Salamat Hashim to organize the program on Qur’an literacy for their people.

However, Al Haj Murad said that today there are so many Bangsamoro that could be able to write, read and understand the Qur’an.

“This is now the indication that we have passed this program on Noble Qur’an,” Al Haj Murad said before the 10,000 participants who attended the program.

Meanwhile, Sheik Mas-od Ali Lantong expressed his thanks to Chairman Al Haj Murad and his family for donating a parcel of land inside the MILF camp in Darapanan, for the establishment of Arabic school, the Institute for Quran and Sunnah which is also supported by the MILF chieftain.

The activity at Camp Darapanan was graced by Sheik Bukkari Yahya Camama, Supervisor Dr. Usop Zaman of the Qur’an Literacy Program, the President of Holy Qur’an Association Sheik Abdulwadod Esmail, Sheik Abdullah Lacsa of the Jameyyatur Risalah.

Among the guests were Supervisor Sheik Ahmad Duli Gayak from the Committee on Education-MILF Central Committee, Sheik Khalifa Nando who are among of the founding members of MILF and now designated as Chairman of Shari’ah Supreme Court of the MILF Central Committee and the IMT-M13 led by Maj. Gen. Datuk Moohd Nazir Mami.

The organizer also said that the first program was the commencement exercises for first batch students of Highest Institute for Qur’an and Sunnah and followed by the 2nd yearly Assembly of Committee on Education – Central Committee, Sub-Committee on Noble Qur’an.

MILF: BIAF Chief Al-Mansoor: BARMM is better than ARMM

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 22): BIAF Chief Al-Mansoor: BARMM is better than ARMM


CAMP RAJAHMUDA, Pikit, North Cotabato  ---- Sammy Al-Mansoor, Chief of Staff of Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces (BIAF) of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), said that Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), also known as Republic Act 11054 will be given utmost concern and priority during the plebiscite on BOL on January 21, 2019.

During the Advocacy on BOL sponsored by 128th Base Command of Eastern Mindanao Front held in this camp, Al-Mansoor emphasized that “Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) is better than ARMM because the BARMM is the closest to our political aspiration.”

Al-Mansoor explained that Bangsamoro Parliamentary Structure is different from current Philippine Political Structure.

“Our political structure has Shari’ah, Islamic Banking System, Madaris System, Haj and Umrah that will be managed and run solely by the BARMM”, Al-Mansoor added.

“Parliamentary System of Governance is nearer to right to self-determination,” he also said.

He further said that the first job of Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTA) is to draft a local government code, electoral code, revenue code and administrative code.

“All Moro people with ages raging 18 and above must strive to vote ‘yes’ in the upcoming BOL Plebiscite,” underscored Al-Mansoor.

Al-Mansoor holds three key positions in the MILF, videlicet; BIAF Chief of Staff, Secretary General of United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP) and as a Commissioner of Bangsamoro Transition Commission representing the Moro Front.

Prof. Esmael A. Abdula, Training Officer of Bangsamoro Leadership and Management Institute (BLMI), said “The BOL is the fruit of our long struggle against oppression.”

Abdula added “The BOL is the answer to our long-dreamed right to self-determination in our homeland.”

Abdula emphasized that, “BOL is the legal translation of Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) signed by the Philippine Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in 2014.”

He explained that Moro struggle underwent three stages, to wit; armed struggle, political struggle (series of negotiations) and democratic struggle (implementation of signed documents that includes BOL).

Among the invited guest speakers who expressed messages of support on BOL ratification were Mohammad “Kelly” Antao, Board member, 1st District, North Cotabato province, Mayor Sumulong Sultan of Pikit municipality with his barangay captains, representatives of Pagalungan, and Datu Montawal LGUs, Base Commanders of 110th Base Command, 109TH Base Command and 108th Base Command.

MILF: Editorial - Legacies to the next generations

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (Sep 16): Editorial - Legacies to the next generations

At least three major legacies earned during the almost five decades of hard struggle including 17 years of harsh and protracted negotiations can be passed on or bequeathed to the next Moro generations. If they value, nurture, and grow them, theirs is a good tomorrow. More importantly, if they continue the flame of assertions, what we failed to secure now can be possible in the future.
The legacies we are referring here are the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB), the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB), and the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL). The FAB and CAB can be likened to titles of lands which vested us rights to them which can be asserted. They were signed by the parties with third party facilitation. Similarly, the BOL, although not yet a perfect law, is a very important piece of legislation that can allow our people to improve their lives. With good and capable leadership, it can transform the Bangsamoro region equal or even better than other regions in the country.

But how can this success be possible? It is not that the situation now and almost 50 years back are much more different and complex? Is it not true that two situations call for new approaches or methodologies?

Surely, we agree to those observations. But there are basic requisites, factors, or principles that stand the challenge of time and situation. What can be good or useful or indispensable before can also be true today. We are referring to dedication, perseverance, transparency, honesty, camaraderie, and creativity. These are qualities or principles that guided the relationships of members of the MILF and in their conduct of the struggle from day one to today that enabled them to reach this far. For instance, the most effective accountability is when one is more fearful of the Great Unseen God Who always sees you than mortal men whom one can hide from.

What we are saying here is that these qualities, which are time-honoured or tested, must be brought in governance when the MILF-led Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) is in place. What remains to be done is to strive to be equipped with the necessary know in actual governance, which members of the MILF, in general, are not well grounded. They were trained to fight in war and not in nation-building.

But what is good in MILF leaders is that they do not have pretensions to know what they do not know. They are willing to learn, especially on how the bureaucracy is going to be run. In this regard, the national government can be of great help.

NDF/Sison: Duterte is Delusional

Sison propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Duterte is Delusional

By Jose Maria Sison
NDFP Chief Political Consultant
September 19, 2018

Duterte is delusional by claiming that he shall have destroyed the CPP-NPA and the entire revolutionary movement of the people by the middle of next year.

He is taking too much of Fentanyl. Thus, he is pipe dreaming. He forgets that the campaigns of mass murder, mass intimidation, fake surrenders and fake encounters under Oplan Kapayapaan are angering the people and inciting them to íntensify their resistance.

Every one knows that the Duterte government is bankrupt and weakened by bureaucratic and military corruption, excessive military and police spending, counterproductive projects, mounting debt burden and budgetary and trade deficits. The government has imposed regressive taxes on the consuming public and caused the prices of basic goods and services to soar to unaffordable levels.

The people consider Duterte a clown who imagines that he has all the money to give jobs and houses to the millions of people who participate in the revolutionary movement. More importantly, he is now the target of people´s rising hatred. They reject the traitorous, tyrannical, murderous and corrupt character of his regime.
It is more likely that Duterte would be ousted from power than that he could destroy the people´s revolutionary movement by the middle of next year.

CPP Information Bureau: On September 21 protests

CPP Information Bureau propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): On September 21 protests

Information Bureau
Communist Party of the Philippines

September 20, 2018

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and all revolutionary forces extend full support to the mass demonstrations slated for tomorrow, September 21.

According to its organizers, the mass actions will commemorate the anniversary of the declaration of martial law in 1972. They aim to express the demand for an end to martial law in Mindanao and protest the Duterte regime’s widespread violations of human rights, police killings and rampant military abuses.

 The protests will also serve to express the people’s protests over incessant price and other basic commodities and express the demand for wage increases, land rights, state subsidies and other demands amid the worsening economic situation.

The CPP denounces the officials of the Philippine National Police (PNP) for insisting on the lie that tomorrow’s mass actions are being organized by the CPP, NPA and NDF in an apparent bid to justify plans to clamp down on the scheduled protests.
Based on news reports, this early, protesters from the provinces are already being prevented by police and military forces to proceed to the demonstration areas.

Preventing people from mounting mass actions are a direct assault on their human rights.
The CPP calls on the people to be vigilant over insidious plans possibly being plotted by the Duterte and his security officials. Indeed, Duterte is becoming increasingly desperate to cling to power as his regime is rocked by an intensifying economic and political crisis and growing clamor for his ouster.

NDF/Jalandoni: Duterte must be held responsible – Jalandoni 20

Luis Jalandoni propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Duterte must be held responsible – Jalandoni


By Luis G. Jalandoni
Senior Adviser, Negotiating Panel
National Democratic Front of the Philippines
Brussels, September 18-19, 2018
Distinguished Jurors of the International Peoples’ Tribunal on the Philippines, Claimant People’s Organizations, Lawyers, Solidarity Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.
One of the biggest opportunities, if not the biggest, for President Rodrigo Duterte to serve the Filipino people is to foster the peace negotiations. This could not only solve the almost 50 year-old armed conflict but also lay the basis for responding to the deepest aspirations of the 75 million peasants for land and the entire nation for justice, democracy, progress and lasting peace.

Duterte’s termination of the peace talks on November 23, 2017 was a crushing blow to the people’s aspirations. The Lumad in Mindanao were shouting: “Bigas, Hindi Bala!” (“Rice not bullets!”), the children, “Lapis at papel, Hindi bomba at bala!” (Pencil and paper, not bombs and bullets!). Duterte ordered: “Bomb the schools!”

On November 22, negotiators of the government were with us in Utrecht. Bilateral teams of both Parties had met several times earlier in the month and completed and initialed the bilateral agreements on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (ARRD) and National Industrialization and Economic Development (NIED), the first two major parts of the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER). Both Parties were preparing for the resumption of the GRP-NDFP formal talks on November 25-27, 2017.

“We are being ordered to go home!”, so sounded the heartbreaking news from Secretary Silvestre Bello and Hernani Braganza of the GRP Negotiating Panel.
The proclamation on November 23 (Proclamation 360) was followed by President Duterte’s declaration of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People’s Army (NPA) as terrorist organizations on December 5, 2017 (Proclamation 374).

This was followed in February 2018 by the proscription by a Regional Trial Court of more than 600 individuals as officers, members, and supporters of the CPP and NPA.

Back Channel Talks, March to June and Stand-Down Agreement on June 9, 2018

Despite these crushing blows, the NDFP agreed to hold back channel talks with the GRP from March to June 2018. On June 9, 2018, the GRP Panel Chairperson, Silvestre Bello signed together with NDFP Panel Chairperson Fidel Agcaoili the Stand Down Agreement. This would be announced by both in Manila on June 15.

This is the initial Ceasefire that would develop into a Coordinated Unilateral Ceasefire (CUC) that would in turn lead to a Bilateral CF. The back channel talks also agreed to have the Amnesty for all (503) political prisoners to be done at the scheduled resumption of formal talks in Oslo on June 28!

Duterte Cancels Talks on June 15, 2018

Alas, on June 15, after attending a meeting of the top military and police officers, President Duterte cancelled the talks, stating that he needed to review all the past agreements, and consult the public. Defense Secretary Lorenzana rejected the Stand Down Agreement, claiming that the NPA would take advantage of it. Duterte declared that talks must be held in the Philippines, the CPP-NPA must stop revolutionary taxation, and the NPA be put in encampments.

These demands of Duterte are of course rejected by the NDFP. These in effect call for the surrender of the revolutionary movement. Already in The Hague Joint Declaration of 1992, surrender or capitulation is excluded. This agreement declares that no precondition shall be made to negate the inherent character and purpose of the peace negotiations.

Major Peace Achievements

 Other major achievements followed The Hague Joint Declaration. The Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (1995) provides safety and immunity to all participants in the peace talks.

Then, the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL,1998) was signed.

and the Joint Secretariat (JS) of the Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC) under CARHRIHL was formed in 2004. The JS holds office in Metro Manila, with staff members nominated by both Parties. The JS assists the JMC which monitors the implementation of CARHRIHL.

In accord with The Hague Joint Declaration, work on social and economic reforms, political and constitutional reforms, proceeded. Both Parties would aim to attain the End of Hostilities and Disposition of Forces which would work for a General Amnesty for all combatants of both Parties.

High Hopes for Success of Peace Talks Under Duterte

 After Duterte won the elections in May 2016, the hopes for the success of peace talks were very high, perhaps higher than ever before. He promised to amnesty all political prisoners on May 16, 2016. In August 2016, he released 21 NDFP Consultants to join the peace talks. Also in August 2016, the GRP and the NDFP reaffirmed all past peace agreements.

At the end of the August talks, the longest simultaneous unilateral ceasefires were held for five months from August 2016 until January 2017.

In January 2017, the third round of formal talks resulted in an agreement to distribute land free to the farmers, a landmark advance in land reform.

Ceasefire Violations by the AFP and EJKs in Duterte’s Drug War

 During this period, however, extrajudicial killings started to multiply in Duterte’s so-called war on drugs.

The CPP issued a strong statement in August 2016 condemning the anti-people and anti-national policies of the Duterte government.

The CPP denounced the ceaasefire violations of the AFP and PNP in more than 500 barangays in 43 provinces, declaring that these were rendering the ceasefire untenable.
Hence, on February 1, 2017, the CPP announced that it would terminate its unilateral ceasefire in ten days.

Duterte went wild in cancelling the talks. He ordered his troops “to flatten the hills”and Defense Secretary Lorenzana declared “All Out War” against the CPP-NPA.

Back Channel Talks and Pattern of Cancellations by Duterte

 NDFP Chief Political Consultant, Prof. Jose Maria Sison enjoined President Duterte to engage in back-channel talks. These took place in Utrecht on March 11-12 and both Parties agreed to a ceasefire on March 31 and hold formal talks on April 2-5 in Oslo.

The CPP was ready with its ceasefire declaration, but Duterte refused to issue the GRP ceasefire, claiming that the NPA had launched a military operation.

The scheduled formal talks got postponed and then proceeded but could not make any advance.

Volatility of Duterte in Peace Talks and Horrendous Human Rights Violations

This pattern of on again, off-again has continued until Duterte’s cancellation of the talks last June 15. His volatility in the peace talks was accompanied by horrendous human rights violations amounting to mass murder of tens of thousands of victims of his drug war.

Numerous killings of Lumad and other indigenous and mass organizations suspected as supporters of the NPA were perpetrated by the regime.

Hundreds of attacks against Lumad schools and forced evacuation of Lumad communities ensued as the military encamped in their barrio halls, health centers, schools and even residences.

The economy deteriorated with laws favoring the rich and causing big losses to the poor who are subjected to skyrocketing prices of basic commodities.

Workers are still plagued with contractualization despite his promise of eradicating it. Striking workers and their supporters are subject to military attacks as in Nutriasia.

Massacres of civilians and non-combatants continue to be perpetrated by the military and police as in the case of the Anique Seven on August 15, 2018 and the Patikul Seven a few days ago. The killings of priests has aroused condemnation from Church leaders and the public.

Solidarity persons like Sr. Patricia Fox and Lawyer Gil Boehringer of Australia are subjected to deportation and other violations of their rights.

People’s Response to Grievous Crimes of President Duterte and His Government

The grievous crimes of President Duterte and his government against the people, including his sabotage and destruction of the peace negotiations, are compelling proof that he must be held accountable.

The people have every reason to reject him and his regime and struggle to build the strongest and broadest united front to overthrow him, in order to build a Philippines that is free, democratic, independent and sovereign.

NDF-NDF-NC: Imploding regime revives destabilization scare

NDF National Council propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Imploding regime revives destabilization scare

NDFP National Council
Public Information Office
Press Statement

September 21, 2018

Having tried and failed to jail opposition Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV by way of a badly scripted scheme to void his amnesty, Rodrigo Duterte and his dirty band are once again raising the destabilization bogey in a desperate bid to wring some benefit out of their latest fiasco.

Again, we hear Duterte ramble that the botched move against Trillanes was necessary to avert an alleged destabilization plot involving Trillanes’ group, the “Yellows” and the “Reds” that will unfold on the 46th anniversary of Marcos’ martial law today and peak this October. 
As part of the drama, the recent bombings in Mindanao and supposed threats of bombings in Metro Manila are being blamed on the New People’s Army (NPA).
Duterte is obviously anxious about the growth of the broad united front against his rising tyranny. He knows that people of increasingly varied political persuasions are set to gather on the Marcosian martial law anniversary in a massive show of defiance against any plan by Duterte to replicate the dictatorship. So great is his panic that he has spread the intrigue that today’s mass action has been organized by the CPP-NPA-NDF. 

In truth, Duterte is his own biggest destabilizer. His clear drift towards tyrannical rule is being rejected by more and more Filipinos. His imposition of onerous taxes and his big-ticket infrastructure projects are fueling not just inflation but the people’s anger. His murderous war on drugs is causing more alarm as the bodies keep piling up.  Exposés of corruption involving persons within Duterte’s innermost circle are stoking further indignation. Worse, Duterte is obsessed with scapegoating other forces for his own epic fails.

Through their repressive and anti-people policies, Duterte and his minions are firing up mass unrest, thus worsening the regime’s isolation and further eroding what litte is left of its base of support. The Duterte regime shudders at the thought that it is being repudiated not only by the people at large but by its increasingly restive military and police forces.

NDF/Sison: Pulang Saludo at Paalam, Ka Jecko

Sison propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Pulang Saludo at Paalam, Ka Jecko  

Ka Jacob (Ka Jecko) Rodinas

Pulang saludo sa iyo Ka Jacob (Ka Jecko) Rodinas. Walang hanggang papuri at pasasalamat sa iyong matapat at militanteng paglilingkod sa sambayanang Pilipino hanggang sa iyong huling hininga.

Dakila kang rebolusyonaryo at bayani ng uri ng proletaryado at lahat ng anakpawis. Namamaalam kami sa iyo subalit mananatili kang lagi sa diwa at puso ng bayan at kilusang rebolusyonaryo na nagpapatuloy sa pakikibaka para sa pambansang kalayaan at demokrasya.

Tauspuso kaming nakikiramay sa iyong pamilya at mga kasama na nagdadalamhati sa iyong pagpanaw. Subalit ipinagbubunyi namin ang iyong mga ambag at tagumpay sa kilusang rebolusyonaryo. Inspirasyong walang hanggan ang iyong maningning na halimbawa.

Bilang martir ang iyong dugo ay magpapataba ng lupa para sa rebolusyon at magbibigay ng ibayong sigla sa rebolusyon.

Mabuhay ang iyong diwa at gawa!
Mabuhay ang rebolusyong Pilipino!
Mabuhay ang sambayanang Pilipino!

Joma Sison
Utrecht, Setyembre 21, 2018

CPP: Zubiri and the AFP’s development amidst famine, an illusion

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 19): Zubiri and the AFP’s development amidst famine, an illusion

Jose Maria Zubiri, provincial Governor of Bukidnon, earlier pronounced that the province will be affected in the country’s undergoing rice crisis. According to him, he is planning to purchase 50,000 sacks of corn grain to be disseminated to the stricken family. These corn, forsooth, are varieties of round-up ready (RR), which are only supposed to be fed to animals, and are hazardous to consumers due to its genetically modified organism (GMO) content.

On the other hand, despite of the gradual land-use conversion of multinational corporations – from rice and root crops to bananas, pineapples, oil palms, and other ready-to-export crops, Bukidnon remains as the primary source of rice in the region. Vast ricefields are found in the towns of Quezon, Kalilangan and Maramag, and cities of Malaybalay and Valencia, which aggregates to more than 50,000 hectares. Major rice depots of the National Food Authority (NFA) are also located in Maramag, Valencia and Malaybalay, where beaucoup of rice supplies are stored. Local rice millers and traders, such as Helen Bernal, Agbayani family, etc., also have these depots and rice supplies in the province.

Still, the governor’s band-aid solutions could not alleviate famine in the province. Unimaginable agricultural oppulence can be found side by side with the prominent inhumane condition of peasants. They are almost working at no cost due to the cheap price of their products and expensive farm inputs. It is also an affront that these farmers cannot afford to eat rice and most of them settle for poridge and corn. Adding insult to the wound, wage remain impoverish, amounting P200 only, to workers and farms workers in sugarcane, pineapple, banana and oil palm plantations, in poultry farms, in the service sector, and P220 for job order and contractual workers in the province. Uncertainty to perpetual and subsistent job also perpetuates as labor contractualization scheme prevails.

Furthermore, lumads and peasants in the countryside consistently suffer from the perduring militarization and legal displacement from their ancestral lands, in the guise of ‘development’ through mining operations in San Fernando; expansion of pineapple, banana and oil palm plantations in Talacag, Pangantucan, Cabanglasan and Impasug-ong; dam projects in Kitaotao, Dangcagan, Kibawe and Damulog; and the on-going Airport construction in the 200 hectare land of Don Carlos. Hence, the land-use and crop conversion

in Bukidnon, under the green-light of Zubiri himself, will only disrupt the farmers due to the dearth of land to till.
It is then becoming more obvious that the local government’s economic program is not for the people, but instead for giant corporations and foreign investors. Zubiri could not deny this actuality, when in fact, this is felt by the lumad, peasants and workers in Bukidnon. The intensifying people’s resistance against the existence and supposed entry and expansion of mining and plantations is just a manifestation that the people discern that these are anti- people, anti-environment and anti-poor. As of this writing, 2,000 lumad are having their Bungkalan campaign in San Fernando, asserting their right to till their own land. Hence, declaring Bukidnon “ready for further development” and is “conflict manageable” is highfalutin, because in materiality, their is no such development in the first place, and the bona fide stakeholders, the people, infer.

From these situations, it is blatant that the pronouncement made by the 4th Infantry Division and the provincial government is a big illusion. Unlikely, out of desperation, the state imposed a militarist solution, under Oplan Kapayapaan, the martial law to suppress the people’s civil and political rights. State forces are occupying baryos, forcing residents to capitulate and violating other people’s rights. This is just fanning the flame of armed resistance.

Just like the other parts of the country, it is more justifiable for the people in Bukidnon to persistently resist the anti-people policies and laws of the US-Duterte regime. The implementation of genuine land reform and national industrialization, independent from foreign intervention, is the just path for a lasting development and peace that have long been aspired by the Filipino people. More than ever, it is always a challenge to relentlessly support the revolutionary movement, for it is peerless with its clear direction and program for the people.

CPP: Magkakasunod na aksyong militar inilunsad sa Camarines Sur

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 19): Magkakasunod na aksyong militar inilunsad sa Camarines Sur

Petsa 20 ng Hulyo 2018, bandang alas 10:00 ng umaga, tinambangan ng isang tim ng NGC ang isang sundalong nakamotor sa haywey ng Brgy. Veneracion, Pamplona, Camarines Sur. Napatay sa nasabing pagtambang si PFC Jhony Franco, myembro ng Military Intelligence Company (MICO) sa ilalim ng 9th IDPA. Nakumpiska sa nasabing sundalo ang isang kalibre .45 na pistola, magasin at mga dokumento at datos na may kaugnayan sa kanyang gawain bilang intel.

Si Franco ay masugid na intel, nag-network building sa lugar para sa pangunahing target o pinuproyektong kasamang kadre na kumikilos sa lugar. Siya rin ang nasa likod ng pagpatay sa dating kasama na si “Ka Neo” na taga-Brgy. Tampadong, Pamplona at pagkahuli sa isang kasama na nasa medical leave. Dagdag pa, siya rin ang may pakana ng “entrapment operation” sa tatlong kasamang nakikipag-transaksyon sa isang construction company. Sumanib ang grupo ni Franco sa mga kontraktor sa layuning makapagkasa ng operasyon laban sa mga kasama. Isang sibilyan ang napatay at isa ang nasugatan at hinuli ng 9th IDPA sa nasabing operasyon.

Petsa 27 ng Hulyo, hinaras ng isang tim ng hukbong bayan ang detatsment ng 22nd IB-CAFGU sa Brgy. Cambalidio, Libmanan.

Petsa 10 ng Agosto, hinaras ng isang tim ng NGC ang mga armadong naka-bonet na elemento ng MICO mula sa 9th IDPA kasabay ang ilang dating NPA na sina “Boris” at dalawang iba pa. Isang kasamahan ng grupo ang napatay sa nasabing pagharas. Ang grupong ito ang responsable sa pagpatay sa mag-amang Abunin na sina Danilo Sr. at Danilo Jr. noong Petsa 26 ng Agosto, alas 5:00 ng umaga sa bahay ng nasabing mag-ama sa Brgy. Veneracion, Pamplona.

Petsa 14 ng Agosto, bandang alas-6 ng umaga, tinambangan ng isang tim ng NGC ang dalawang kaaway na kukuha ng tubig para dalhin sa kanilang detatsment sa Brgy. Cambalidio, Libmanan. Nakasakay sa motorsiklo ang isang PFC Espiritu at isang CAFGU nang tambangan. Napatay si Espiritu at sugatan ang CAFGU.

Petsa 6 ng Setyembre, alas-12:30 ng madaling araw, hinaras ng isang tim ng NGC ang detatsment ng 22nd IB-CAFGU sa Sityo Dinumpilan, Brgy. Malinao, Libmanan. Napatay ang isang myembro ng CAFGU sa nasabing aksyon. Kinaumagahan ay kinuha ng isang van na kulay green ang kaswalti at dinala sa bayan ng Sipocot.

Ang maliliit na tagumpay ng BHB ay mahalaga sa pangkabuuang takbo ng digmang bayan na inilulunsad ng rebolusyonaryong kilusan. Hindi ito magtatagumpay kung wala ang malawak na suporta ng masang api lalo na ang mga magsasaka at manggagawa kasabay ang iba pang uring naghahangad ng pagbabago sa ating lipunan upang itayo ang isang lipunang bawal gumawa ng masama sa kapwa.

Mabuhay ang PKP!

Mabuhay ang BHB!

Mabuhay ang sambayanang Pilipino!

Isulong ang demokratikong rebolusyong bayan!

CPP: Use lessons in struggle against US-Marcos dictatorship to resist US-Duterte regime

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 20): Use lessons in struggle against US-Marcos dictatorship to resist US-Duterte regime

Tomorrow, September 21, the Filipino people will mark the declaration of martial law and imposition of open fascist rule by the US-Marcos dictatorship in 1972, nearly fifty years ago. It will always be relevant to recall one of the darkest periods in Philippine history, when more than 70,000 were incarcerated as political dissidents, 34,000 tortured, 3,200 summarily executed and the rights and freedoms of millions curtailed and trampled upon.

For a decade and a half, the dictator Marcos and his family, his cronies and armed minions plundered the country, stole and stashed away billions of pesos in public money. Marcos presided over an economic crisis as the neoliberal policy regime began to define the impositions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank starting the mid-1970s. In exchange for IMF/WB loans, Marcos reduced social subsidies, imposed taxes, further liberalized trade, pressed down wages, gave foreign investors tax incentives and so on.

Under Marcos, the crisis of the semicolonial and semifeudal system worsened. In accordance with the IMF/WB’s so-called “structural readjustment programs,” Marcos’ fiscal and economic policies made the Filipino people suffer from widespread unemployment, rural displacement, low wages, labor migration, ballooning foreign debt, peso devaluations, oil price increases, rising costs of living and overall deterioration of their social conditions.

The Marcoses were overthrown in 1986 in a mass uprising that served as culmination of 14 years of anti-dictatorship struggle in which millions of people took part in various forms of resistance. For years, activists carried out clandestine work of arousing, organizing and mobilizing the workers, students and other sectors, eventually shattering the martial law terror and mounting open forms of protests. The armed struggle waged by the New People’s Army, under the Party’s’ leadership, served as one of the most persevering and effective forms of resistance which dealt the most significant blows against the Marcos regime.

The commemoration of Marcos martial law this year is profoundly significant as the Filipino people confront the tyrant Duterte who unabashedly declares his admiration for Marcos and advocates the use of state violence to impose his will on the people. He gave Marcos a “hero’s burial” and allowed the complete rehabilitation of the Marcoses after successive regimes since 1986 all refused to punish the Marcoses in a show of class fealty. With their wealth plundered from the people largely intact, the Marcoses remain one of the most powerful ruling class families.

The CPP enjoins the Filipino people to draw inspiration from their own history of heroic struggle against the Marcos fascist regime in their resistance against the US-backed Duterte regime.

 With his reign of terror, mass murder and rampant police and military abuses, Duterte has joined Marcos as among the most detested icons of fascism in Philippine history. He has openly expressed contempt for human rights which he considers an impediment to the interest of foreign big business. He respects no right nor freedom in his regime’s drive to subject the Filipino people to ever worsening forms of oppression and exploitation.

Duterte has incited the PNP and AFP to commit grave abuses against the people. Police and Duterte vigilante groups have gone berserk. More than 20,000 people have been killed in his so-called war against drugs which is nothing but a war among big drug syndicates, including those under his protection. Everyday, tens of thousands of peasants and minority peoples are subjected to military abuses, harassment, intimidation and coercion under its Oplan Kapayapaan war of suppression.

Military and paramilitary groups have perpetrated the killing of more than one hundred peasant activists. At least five hundred political prisoners remain in jail.

Much like Marcos’ binge of anomaly-ridden white elephant projects, Duterte is pushing hard with his Build, Build, Build program where government contracts for construction projects are awarded to his dummies and cronies as well as to favored big bourgeois compradors as a form of payment for support during the elections. Like the Marcoses, the Duterte family is amassing wealth through kickbacks, bribery and protection money by criminal syndicates. The Duterte regime is set on borrowing tens of billions of dollars in high-interest loans to finance these projects. These projects include dams and airports which threaten to drive away people from their ancestral domain, agricultural land, coastal areas and other places of residence and work.

To finance these loans, the Duterte regime has imposed a slew of burdensome taxes under the TRAIN law, long-espoused by credit rating agencies and IMF/WB-trained neoliberal technocrats. Since the start of the year, prices of rice, fish, other food items and basic commodities have skyrocketed. Inflation is at a decade-high. The Filipino people are suffering gravely from high prices, low wages and widespread unemployment. Pronouncements by Duterte’s economic managers that the Philippines is set on becoming an upper-middle income country by 2019 is utterly baseless.

Continuing the liberalization policies since the 1970s, the Duterte regime is bent on further pushing trade liberalization in line with the WTO/GATT policy regime. To justify the plan to remove trade barriers to importation of rice and other commodities, Duterte makes false claims that these will solve the problem of inflation, omitting the fact that domestic prices have risen incessantly even with the increased importation of rice and other agricultural commodities over the past decade. Duterte has instead perpetuated state neglect of domestic food production, with plans to further cut agricultural subsidies.

The economy is fast approaching a severe crisis as deficits in foreign trade and balance of payments are soaring to historic highs. Last week, the Philippine peso hit 54 to the US dollar, its lowest in almost one decade and a half. The Duterte government is increasingly bankrupt and will be increasingly dependent on borrowing money and imposing new taxes.

The Duterte regime’s economic policy is basically a continuation of the policies of the past forty years under Marcos and all post-Marcos pseudodemocratic regimes. The crisis of the backward, agrarian, import-dependent and export-oriented economy continues to worsen. The semicolonial and semifeudal system is rapidly decaying. The Filipino people are suffering from sharply deteriorating socio-economic conditions. The situation is ever favorable for waging armed struggle and all forms of resistance and accelerating the downfall of the fascist Duterte.

Workers are being driven to struggle for wage increases, demand job security and assert their democratic rights to form unions and collectively bargain.
The peasant masses and oppressed minority peoples are being compelled to rise up in their numbers to defend their land against the encroachment of mining companies, big plantations and dam projects, assert their right to cultivate idle public or hacienda lands for food production, demand just prices for their produce, state subsidy for production, funds for calamity relief, debt cancellation and so on.

The Filipino people are clamoring for a solution to the rising prices of food, costs of education, medicine and other commodities. They demand jobs and an end to the labor-export policy. They demand subsidies for free education, mass housing and support for public health. Moreoever, they demand justice for all victims of killings and abuses perpetrated by police and military forces and an end to Duterte’s Oplan Tokhang and Oplan Kapayapaan and its war against the Moro people.

The Duterte regime is beset by an increasingly intense political crisis. Its alliance with the Marcos and Arroyo cliques is further isolating it from the people. At the same time, it is weakening internally as various factions jostle for support and contend over pork barrel as the reactionary system gears for next year’s elections. Duterte’s drive to preempt the elections with his dictatorship project in the guise of charter change is being met with stiff resistance, even by some of his allies who are wary of Duterte plans to perpetuate himself in power.

His penchant to persecute his political rivals is rousing the various democratic forces to further unite and intensify their common struggle to oust Duterte from Malacañang. A broad united front has emerged opposing Duterte’s tyranny, resisting his dictatorship schemes and demanding his ouster.

His declaration last year of crushing the revolutionary armed struggle waged by the New People’s Army before the end of 2018 is set to fail. As the NPA continues to mount tactical offensives nationwide, Duterte was forced this early to take back his earlier proclamation and instead make another empty declaration of crushing the NPA by the middle of 2019. This declaration will likewise be frustrated as thousands are being pushed to take up arms to resist the state’s armed aggression to pave the way for mining companies, energy projects, tourist sites, plantations and other infrastructure and so-called development projects.

To consolidate his control and secure his power, Duterte seeks to extend martial law in Mindanao and impose it nationwide. However, the combination of the political and economic crisis is only fanning the flames of the people’s resistance as they wage various forms of struggle.

Much like during the period of intense crisis under Marcos, the Filipino people are increasingly driven to rise up in their millions and put an end to the fascist US-Duterte regime. Having learned their lessons from the struggle to overthrow the US-Marcos dictatorship, they are determined to unite and wage various forms of struggle to end the fascist, corrupt and puppet Duterte regime.

CPP: Hinggil sa hatol na magdala ang berdugong si Palparan

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 20): Hinggil sa hatol na magdala ang berdugong si Palparan 

Ikinalugod ng rebolusyunaryong mamamayan ng Quezon ang hatol na ibinigay ng Bulacan Regional Trial Court sa kriminal at berdugong si Jovito Palparan, kahapon, September 17, 2018.

Kahima’t hindi nito matutumbasan ang rebolusyunaryong hustisya, nagpaluwag kahit papaano sa kalooban ng mga pamilya ng biktima ni Palparan ang hatol na siya ay maysala sa pagdukot at pagkawala nina Sherlyn Cadapan at Karen Empeño.

Si Palparan ay may utang na dugo rin sa pagkakapaslang kina Kasamang Eden Marcellana at Edi Gumanoy noong Abril 21, 2003 sa Oriental Mindoro. Si Ka Eden ay nagmula sa Barangay Malaya sa bayan ng General Luna at si Ka Edi ay naninirahan sa bayan ng Nakar nang maging aktibong kasapi ng kilusang magbubukid sa rehiyon.

Si Palparan din ang sangkot sa brutal na pamamaslang sa mag-asawang Expedito Albarillo. Ang panganay na anak nilang si Ka Arman Albarillo ay nag-NPA sa paghahanap ng katarungan para sa kanyang mga magulang. Naging martir ng larangan ng SQBP si Ka Arman nang magbuwis siya ng buhay noong June 30, 2012 sa isang labanan sa pagitan ng 74th IBPA at ng yunit ng NPA na kanyang pinamumunuan sa bayan ng San Narciso.

Kailangang patuloy na bantayan ng mamamayan ang pinakahuling pangyayaring ito, tiyakin na makakalaboso si Palparan na walang anumang tratong VIP, at hindi maganap ang maruming maniobra ng kanyang mga kasabwat para muling malibre ang berdugo sa kanyang mga pananagutan.

Kailangan pa ring patuloy na litisin si Palparan sa napakahabang listahan ng kanyang krimen sa mga mamamayan ng Southern Tagalog, Central Luzon at Kabisayaan.

Hindi rin dapat kumampante ang mamamayan. Ang hatol na maysala si Palparan ay hindi nangangahulugang may umiiral na hustisya sa bansa, lalong hindi dapat na ipagpasalamat at ibigay na tropeyo sa pasistang rehimen ni Digong Duterte.

Ang nakamit na tagumpay ng mamamayan sa reaksyunaryong korte ay dili’t resulta ng masikhay na pakikibaka nila sa pangunguna ng mga pamilya ng biktima ni Palparan.

Magmumukhang patakbuhing asong kalye si Palparan kapag ikinumpara sa bangis na ipinakita ng bang-aw na si Duterte sa nakaraang dalawang taon ng kanyang panunungkulan.

Anu’t-anuman, laging may takdang panahon para sa pagpapataw ng rebolusyunaryong hustisya sa mga may malulubhang krimen sa mamamayan.

CPP: Benguet Corporation and the reactionary government are accountable for the Ucab tragedy

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Benguet Corporation and the reactionary government are accountable for the Ucab tragedy

In the aftermath of typhoon Ompong’s wrath, the small-scale miners in Bgy. Ucab, Itogon, Benguet fell victim to a landslide that left more than 40 people dead and more than 60 others still missing. President Duterte as usual goes into doublespeak mode again, saying that all mining operations, small-scale or large-scale should be stopped, but he leaves it to Congress to decide what to do with the prevailing mining laws. But his minion, Secretary Roy Cimatu of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), immediately laid the blame on the small-scale miners, washing their hands of their responsibility in the said tragedy. He then cited the said incident as reason for declaring that small-scale mining in the Cordillera Region should be banned. This statement is ludicrous, for the people of Itogon including the local officials know that a large-scale mining company, Benguet Corporation, is responsible for putting the miners’ life at risk. Since abandoning the said mines after more than five decades of operation, Benguet Corporation continues to finance small-scale mining operations within these abandoned sites. Benguet Corporation knows the dangers lurking in these sites yet they still continue to profit through small-scale mining. It is unfair to blame the small-scale miners, who are pushed to work in these abandoned mines due to lack of other sources of cash for their daily needs.

Ever the loyal servant of its greedy imperialist masters, the government gives free rein to large-scale mining companies while turning a blind eye to the dangers and inhuman working conditions being faced by mining workers. They condemn and impose restrictions on small-scale mining while allowing large mining companies to pillage the Cordillera’s rich natural resources. Through the Mining Act of 1995, the mountains of Cordillera were further opened to unbridled plunder and destruction by foreign and local mining companies, notwithstanding the damage brought about by the long-time operations of the Big Three – Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company, Inc. (LCMC), Benguet Corporation (BC) and Philex Mining Company, Inc. For this year alone, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) approved over 50 mining applications and 65 patents by big local and foreign mining companies, covering 539,841 hectares. Smaller holdings included, the total coverage of large-scale mining applications in the whole Cordillera is a staggering 746,948 hectares – more than half of Cordillera’s land mass!

Apart from the Itogon catastrophe, a similar landslide buried members of a family in Bontoc, Mountain Province. Ompong’s onslaught in Benguet, Mountain Province and the rest of the Cordilleras is another glaring proof of the vulnerability of the poor in the face of disasters. The fascist Duterte’s zero casualty target is pure hogwash. How could the toiling masses prepare for oncoming disasters when they are hard-pressed to do work that puts their lives to risk in order to live? It is the state’s responsibility to ensure its people’s safety from calamities such as typhoons. Instead of blaming the poor and imposing restrictions on small-scale mining, the government should go after the greedy local and foreign mining companies who have long been the true disaster to the lives of the Cordillera people. On top of it all, imperialism has been the culprit in the large-scale destruction of the environment that has caused climate change and brought widespread calamities. Their unending greed is the reason for the unrelenting plunder of the natural resources all over the world.

The Cordillera People’s Democratic Front (CPDF) expresses its deepest sympathies to the families of the victims. The CPDF reiterates that the Mining Act of 1995, People’s Small-Scale Mining Act and other mining laws that trample on the national patrimony must be repealed. The CPDF calls on the people to further strengthen their ranks and fight for the defense of land and its natural resources. To prevent further tragedies, we must steadfastly resist the entry of large-scale mining companies and other destructive projects. The victorious struggles against the Chico Dams, Cellophil and large scale mining companies in many parts of the region, are shining legacies which show us that the only way to stop destructive and plunderous projects is by taking the path of armed revolutionary struggle. Through this, we can still preserve the remaining natural resources for the next generation and for national industrialization and socialist construction.

Defend our land, resist further plunder of the Cordillera’s natural resources!

 Justice for the mine workers of Ucab!

 Down with imperialism!

CPP: Pakikiisa sa mga kilos protesta sa Setyembre 21

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (Sep 21): Pakikiisa sa mga kilos protesta sa Setyembre 21

 Ipinapaabot ng Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas at ng Bagong Hukbong Bayan ang pakikiisa sa ilampung libong nagrarali sa buong bansa upang gunitain ang pagpapataw ng batas militar noong Setyembre 21, 1972 at upang makibaka para wakasan ang paghahari ng terorismo, tiraniya at pasismo sa ilalim ng rehimeng Duterte. Nagsisilbi rin ang mga rali para paalingawngawin ang sigaw laban sa pabigat na mga buwis at sumisirit na presyo ng mga bilihin at itulak ang kahilingan para sa dagdag sahod, trabaho at seguridad sa trabaho, reporma sa lupa, pampublikong subsidyong panlipunan, at iba pang kagyat na reporma para sa kagalingan ng bayan.

 Desperadong kumakapit sa poder si Duterte sa harap ng tumitinding krisis sa ekonomya at pulitika. Binabagbag ang kanyang rehimen ng mga panloob na sigalot ng kanyang mga alyadong nag-aagawan sa pork barrel at mga burukratikong pakinabang. Kasabay nito, lalo siyang nahihiwalay sa bayan na labis na nagdurusa sa mga patakarang anti-mamamayan.

 Nagpupunyagi ang bayan sa pagsulong ng iba’t ibang anyo ng paglaban sa kabila ng todong panunupil. Sa partikular, ang rebolusyonaryong armadong pakikibaka ay tuluy-tuloy na sumusulong sa buong bansa.

 Nananawagan ang Partido sa lahat na pagtibayin ang kanilang kapasyahan at determinasyon na makibaka para wakasan ang rehimeng US-Duterte. Magiging mahirap at puno ng pasakit ang paglaban at kakailanganin ang maraming sakripisyo. Gayunman, kung lalaban na isang nagkakaisang pwersa ang bayan at sama-samang magmamartsa, tiyak ang tagumpay.

113 NPA supporters renounce rebels

From Panay News (Sep 22): 113 NPA supporters renounce rebels

One-hundred thirteen sympathizers of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental have renounced their support to the revolutionary movement, according to the Philippine Army.

The 303rd Infantry Brigade based in Murcia, Negros Occidental said two groups of rebel supporters took their oath of allegiance to the government last week.

The groups were composed of 27 individuals from Barangay Mahalang and 86 from Barangay Buenavista – both in Himamaylan – the Army added.

Colonel Alberto Desoyo, commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade, said he was grateful for the decision of the former rebel supporters.

“The people are starting to realize the true objective of the terrorist organization, which is to sow terror and hinder progress,” Desoyo added.

He urged parents to advise their children to avoid NPA’s recruitment.

The former rebel supporters said they were “deceived” by the NPA by urging them to form people’s organizations and contribute revolutionary taxes, the Army said.

Lieutenant Colonel Egberto Dacoscos, commander of the 62nd Infantry Battalion, lauded those who “stood up against the terrorist organization and their criminal activities.”

Dacoscos was the one who facilitated the renouncement ceremony of the rebel supporters.

He said the close coordination among government agencies, local government units and the public led to the rebel supporter’s change of heart.

360 Cafgu recruits start training

From the Sun Star-Davao (Sep 21): 360 Cafgu recruits start training

A TOTAL of 360 Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) Active Auxiliary recruits started their Basic Military Training at the headquarters of the 3rd Infantry Battalion (IB).

Philippine Army’s 1003rd Infantry Brigade (IBde) commander, Brigadier General Ernesto Torres Jr. said their training started on Wednesday during the training’s opening ceremony in Malagos, Calinan where the headquarters of the 3rd IB is located.

The recruits are seen to boost the security in Davao City.

Cafgu is a paramilitary unit composed of volunteer reservists organized into companies of personnel that are led by regular troops to support the Armed Forces of the Philippines in counter-insurgency activities. They are tasked to assist the troops in protecting the barangays from immediate threats as they are more familiar with their own communities.

The new batch of recruits all came from Davao City who will undergo 45-day training wherein they are expected to learn law enforcement operations. After completion, two companies will be deployed in the third district while the other company will be assigned in the second district.

With the prevailing security situation in Davao City due to threats of terrorism and insurgency, the new breed of Cafgu will further increase the manpower and strength of the troops in countering these threats.

2 alleged NPA members nabbed in Davao City

From the Sun Star-Davao (Sep 21): 2 alleged NPA members nabbed in Davao City

TWO alleged members of the New People’s Army (NPA) were arrested on Friday morning, September 21, after reports were received of unidentified armed men’s presence at Purok 3, Barangay Langub, Davao City particularly at Lucob residence.

Based on the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) report, around 10:35 a.m. on September 21, Talomo Police Station received a report that unidentified armed men believed to be NPA members were spotted in the area.

Talomo PS chief, Police Chief Inspector (PCI) Ronald Lao informed DCPO director Police Senior Superintendent Alexander Tagum about the report where the latter immediately formed a Joint Task Group composed of Police Station 3, Intelligence Branch, and City Mobile Force Company (CMFC).

The team held a quick mission planning at DCPO Conference Room and a combat operation was launched together with Regional Mobile Force Battalion (RMFB) 11 afterwards.

The operation resulted in the arrest of Jimmy Duran Lucob, 26, single, construction worker, resident of Purok 3, Barangay Langub, Davao City and Raquelyn Moda, 19, native of Caburan, Davao Occidental and presently residing at the same place.

Recovered from the possession of Lucob during the arrest were live fragmentation grenade and assorted subversive documents while from Moda were one unit homemade.3516 caliber revolver and drawn maps of their targets.

Security forces likewise recovered hammocks, assorted medicines, new MC 12V battery with clamps and long wire and three single motorcycles.

The report added that around 5 p.m., Friday, a combat operation was ongoing following reports from neighbors that around 14 adult males carrying short firearms were seen running towards the forested area heading to Matina Pangi direction.

2 IEDs recovered in Maco

From the Mindanao Times (Sep 21): 2 IEDs recovered in Maco

Soldiers of 71st Infantry Battalion successfully recovered two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) at Purok 5, Sitio Tigpan, Barangay Dumlan, Maco, Compostela Valley on Wednesday around 6:30 a.m.

1Lt. Jhocell Asis, the civil-military operations (CMO) officer of the 71st IB, told TIMES that the soldiers responded to a tip from a former rebel who reported to have seen a trip wire along the road of the barangay.

The troops of Alpha Company under the 71st IB, led by 1Lt. Randy A. Coloma recovered IEDs weighing 15 and seven kilos, respectively, with one blasting cap and 50-meter wire.

Lt. Col Esteveyn E. Ducusin, commander of the 71st IB, said the recovered IEDs only proved that the NPAs are already desperate.

“We condemn the (NPAs) for continuously using IEDs which may inflict great harm to the civilians, especially when placed in nearby communities such as roads where everybody is passing by,” Ducusin said.

The IEDs were brought to the headquarters of the 71st IB at Purok 8, Barangay Nueva Visayas, Mawab, Compostela Valley for proper disposition.

Suspek sa Gensan Blast, natimbog!

From the Mindanao Examiner (Sep 22): Suspek sa Gensan Blast, natimbog!

Nahulog na sa kamay ng mga otoridad ang pangunahging suspek sa pambobomba sa General Santos city na ikinasugat ng walo katao, matapos na mahuli sa inilatag na anti-drug operation sa Barangay Poblacion, Polomolok, South Cotabato.

Kinilala ni PNP 12 spokesperson Police Supt. Alrin Gonzales ang suspek na si Jeffrey Panag Alonzo, taga- Barangay Lapu-Lapu, Polomolok, South Cotabato.

Ayon kay Gonzales, nadakip si Alonzo sa buy-bust operation at positibo siyang itinuro ng mga testigo na nag-iwan at nagpasabog ng bomba.

Sinampahan na ng kasong multiple frustrated murder ang nadakip na suspek.

Lumabas sa imbestigasyon na may personal na galit ang nag-udyok sa suspek na bombahin ang ilang business establishment na pag-aari ng kanyang mga kamag-anak.

Sinasabing may ugnayan sa Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters at Maute Group ang nadakip na suspek na miyembro umano ng Nilong Group na isa sa mga symphatizer ng napatay na lider ng Ansar Al-Khalifah Philippines (AKP) na si Tokboy Maguid.

Nabatid na nag-iwan ng walo katao na sugatan ang nangyaring pagsabog sa isang karinderya sa panulukan ng Makar sa Barangay Apopong, General Santos City, nitong Setyembre a-16.

Dahil dito, itinaas na rin ang alerto ng seguridad na ipinapatupad sa North Cotabato matapos na pinasabog din nitong Biyernes ng gabi ang isang hinihinalang baggage na may lamang bomba sa bayan ng Midsayap.

Nabatid na ang pagsabog sa Gensan ay pangatlong insidente ng pambobomba sa South Central Mindanao ang unang magsunod ay nangyari sa Isulan, Sultan Kudarat na ikinasawi ng lima katao at hindi bababa sa 40 katao ang sugatan.

Police capture 2 insurgents in Davao City, dozen more escape

From the Mindanao Examiner (Sep 21): Police capture 2 insurgents in Davao City, dozen more escape

Police forces captured 2 communist insurgents on Friday afternoon in Davao City, the hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte, but at least 14 others managed to escape from the raiders, who were all armed with guns, officials said.

Officials said the duo – a man and woman – have been captured after policemen, led by Senior Superintendent Alexander Tagum, raided a house on a remote area called Langub in Maa village.

Two suspected New People’s Army rebels are captured Friday, September 21, 2018, in Davao City in Mindanao in these screen shots from a live Brigada News Davao radio broadcast on Facebook. Police also recover a fragmentation grenade, a revolver, electrical wire, cell phones, among other things. (Best available photos. Mindanao Examiner)

Tagum, the city’s police chief, said those who escaped were armed with .45-caliber pistols. “Pursuit operation is going on,” he told reporters.

He said villagers tipped off the police on the presence of gunmen in the area and police immediately launched the operation that led to the capture of the 2 members of the New People’s Army.

Tagum said the rebels were up to something after policemen recovered a map and three motorcycles left behind by the insurgents, who are fighting for a separate state.

The identities of those captured were not immediately available, but the woman has denied the allegations against them. The duo would be placed under interrogation while the operation against the NPA is continuing in Davao City, where the rebels are actively operating.

Duterte thanks soldiers, vows full support to AFP modernization

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 21): Duterte thanks soldiers, vows full support to AFP modernization

CAMP O'DONNEL, Capas, Tarlac -- President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday thanked soldiers for their dedication in protecting the people and vowed to fully support the modernization program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The President gave awards and plaques of appreciation to the soldiers and private citizens during the 12th Activation Anniversary celebration of the Mechanized Infantry Division (MID) here.

"As long as you do your steadfast duty, the government will continue to give its support to all of you," Duterte said.

The President, in his speech, reminisced the patriotism and bravery showed by the troops during the war against terrorists in Marawi City.

He also mentioned the government’s relentless fight against illegal drugs and reiterated that foreign critics have nothing to do with these woes in the country as it is an internal problem.

The government is doing its best to solve the issue, Duterte pointed out.

"I will do everything to protect the Philippines and the Filipino people," he added.

MID Commander Major General Gilbert I. Gapay, for his part, thanked the President, saying that the division was very happy to celebrate this very special occasion in the company of their Commander-in-Chief.

“Although, we know that the President is very busy attending the left and right problems of the country, he was able to grace our occasion,” Gapay said.

The event was highlighted by the viewing and capability demonstration of the latest armored vehicles of the MID, which were used in the liberation of Marawi City.

There was also a wreath-laying ceremony at the Armor-Cavalry Memorial as a tribute for the gallant men of the unit, who offered their ultimate sacrifice not only during the Marawi war, but also in the other combat operations of the MID.

The celebration was themed "Team Armor, Kaagapay ng Sambayanan Tungo sa Kapayapaan at Kaunlaran". It was also attended by Secretary Hermogenes C. Esperon Jr., National Security Adviser, other Cabinet officials, AFP officers, and local government officials including Tarlac Governor Susan Yap and Capas Mayor Reynaldo Catacutan.

The President also visited the Hardin ng Lunas of the Tarlac Heritage Foundation led by Dr. Isa Suntay.

Sibugay village officials yield loose firearms

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 21): Sibugay village officials yield loose firearms

A Police Regional Office-9 photo handout shows the 39 firearms placed on the table that were surrendered by the barangay officials in R.T. Lim, Zamboanga Sibugay. 

ZAMBOANGA CITY -- Police said on Friday that at least 39 unlicensed firearms were surrendered by barangay officials of RT Lim town, Zamboanga Sibugay province.

Chief Insp. Helen Galvez, Police Regional Office 9 (Zamboanga Peninsula) information officer, said the firearms were surrendered in a ceremony held at the municipal gymnasium of R.T. Lim on Wednesday.

Galvez said surrendered were 17 homemade 12-gauge shotguns; four homemade caliber .38 revolvers; 11 homemade “pistolized” shotguns; two caliber .45 pistols; two caliber .20 rifles; two caliber .22 rifles; and a caliber .357 revolver.

She said the village officials also surrendered five long magazines, two short magazines, and two gun barrels.

During the turnover ceremony, police called on local residents to surrender unlicensed and unregistered firearms to the police or military “to ensure peace and tranquility in the community.”

Galvez said the surrendered guns were placed under the custody of the Provincial Logistics Branch of the police in Zamboanga Sibugay.

The surrender ceremony was attended by Supt. Edwin Verson, deputy provincial director for operations; Col. Bagnus Gaerlan, 102nd Infantry Brigade commander; Lt. Col. Diosdado Carlos Pambid, 6th Special Forces Battalion commander; RT Lim Mayor Michael Piodena; and Pastor Santiago Briones of the Assembly of God.

2 NPA members fall, 14 others escape in Davao police ops

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 21): 2 NPA members fall, 14 others escape in Davao police ops

Firearms, fragmentation grenade and other materials seized from the two New People's Army members in Davao City on Friday. Photo courtesy of the DCPO PIO
DAVAO CITY –Two suspected members of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) were arrested while 14 of their comrades escaped when the police swooped down on a residence here on Friday.

Senior Supt. Alexander Tagum, Davao City Police Office (DCPO) director, said he immediately ordered a combat operation after the Talomo police received information that unidentified armed men, who were believed to be members the NPA, were spotted at the Lucob residence in Purok 3, Barangay Langub.

The operation led to the arrest of Jimmy Duran Lucob, 26, single, construction worker, a resident of Purok 3, Barangay Langub, and Raquelyn Moda, 19, a native of Caburan, Davao Occidental.

Tagum ordered a pursuit operation against the remaining NPA members,  who escaped after residents in the area informed police that they saw around 14 men carrying firearms scampering into the forested part of Matina Pangi.

DCPO spokesperson Ma. Theresita Gaspan said authorities recovered from the possession of Lucob a live fragmentation grenade and assorted subversive documents, while Moda yielded a homemade revolver and drawn maps of their supposed targets.

Gaspan said police also seized hammocks, assorted medicines, subversive documents, three single motorcycles, and other evidence.

Suspect in Sept. 16 GenSan blast nabbed

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 21): Suspect in Sept. 16 GenSan blast nabbed

GENERAL SANTOS CITY -- Police have arrested the primary suspect in the bomb attack in front of a lying-in clinic along the national highway here on Sunday, which left eight people wounded.

Senior Supt. Oliver Enmodias, deputy regional director for operations of the Police Regional Office (PRO)-12, said in a press conference here on Friday that the suspect, Jeffrey Panag Alonzo, was nabbed on Wednesday in a buy-bust operation in Polomolok town in South Cotabato.

He said the suspect, a resident of Barangay Lapu in Polomolok, was positively identified by witnesses as the same person, who planted the improvised explosive device that went off before noon last Sunday near the Bonita Lying-in Clinic in Makar junction, Purok Malipayon in Barangay Apopong.

"He was one of the two suspects aboard a motorcycle who left the eco-bag moments before the explosion," he said.

Enmodias, who heads the Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) "Bonita", said Alonzo's features matched with the computerized facial composite they generated based on accounts of witnesses.

Supt. Aldrin Gonzales, PRO-12 public information officer, said Alonzo was initially arrested by personnel of the Polomolok municipal police station.

While being processed, he said the operatives presented the suspect's photos to the witnesses and eventually confirmed his identity.

The police official said Alonzo was charged on Wednesday for selling and possession of dangerous drugs.

He said the SITG Bonita filed multiple frustrated murder charges on Friday against the suspect.

Chief Supt. Eliseo Rasco, PRO-12 regional director, had tagged the South Cotabato-based Nilong Grouo as behind the attack.

The Nilong Group, which reportedly originated and was previously based in Barangay Lumakil in Polomolok, South Cotabato, emerged two years ago after being linked by authorities to a robbery, illegal drug trafficking, gun-for-hire and other criminal activities in the area.

The group was allegedly allied with the Sarangani-based terror group Ansar Al-Khilafah Philippines (AKP), which was part of the local network of the Islamic State-inspired Maute Group.

Rasco confirmed that the group had merged with the remnants of the AKP, whose leader, Tokboy Maguid, was killed in an encounter with joint operatives in Kiamba, Sarangani in January last year.

As to the motive of the blast, the official said it could have been "personal grudge," specifically a family-related conflict involving the lying-in clinic's owner.

Security up in ARMM, Region 12 as raps filed vs. BIFF bombers

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 21): Security up in ARMM, Region 12 as raps filed vs. BIFF bombers

CHECKPOINT. A motorist undergoes inspectio in one of the checkpoints set up in Maguindanao following the series of recent bombing incidents perpetrated by suspected members of the Islamic State-linked Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters in Central Mindanao. (Photo by Maguindanao PPO)
KIDAPAWAN CITY – Police and military visibility in areas that are likely targets of terrorism have been intensified after police filed charges against Islamic militant linked to the bombings in Central Mindanao.

Chief Supt. Graciano Mijares, director of the Police Regional Office-Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (PRO-ARMM), said alert level has been raised by police offices in Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur and the provinces of Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi in the Zamboanga Peninsula.

Mijares said the raised alert level is being coordinated with community leaders as a preemptive measure against possible retaliatory strikes by extremist elements.

“All avenues are being explored as intelligence gathering are also maximized along with our partners in the military,” Mijares said in a statement Thursday.

Police Regional Office  (PRO) 12 covering the provinces of North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and the cities of Cotabato, Kidapawan, Tacurong, Koronadal, and General Santos also elevated to “alert level 4” status.

Chief Supt. Eliseo Tam Rasco,  PRO-12 director, said “alert level 4” includes the implementation of continuing round-the-clock police checkpoints and the “No I.D. (identification document), No Entry” policy just like in the cities of Cotabato and General Santos.

On Cotabato, persons without IDs are subjected to questioning by onsite investigators and are eventually not allowed to pass through the checkpoints when something irregular is observed.

Curfew hours, currently observed in the cities of Cotabato and General Santos, are also being encouraged in other parts of the region.

Only recently, police have filed multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder charges against 38 members of the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) for their involvement in the August 28 and September 2 bombings in Isulan town in Sultan Kudarat.

At least four bombing incidents against non-combatants have been recorded in Central Mindanao since Aug. 28 until Sept. 16 when improvised explosive devices were set off in General Santos City, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat; and Midsayap, North Cotabato.

Among those charged in the Isulan twin blasts were Esmael Abdulmalik, also known as Abu Toraife, and bomb-maker Salahuddin Hassan.

Toraife reportedly heads one of the three factions of the BIFF, which pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and has publicly displayed the IS flag in some areas in Maguindanao where they mainly operate.