Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Philippine Army: BIFF Militants Suffer Heavy Death Toll in Weekend Fighting

From BenarNews (Sep 27, 2021): Philippine Army: BIFF Militants Suffer Heavy Death Toll in Weekend Fighting (By Jeoffrey Maitem and Mark Navales)

Peacekeepers belonging to a joint peace monitoring group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, the Philippine army and police secure a village in Maguindanao, southern Philippines, Aug. 27, 2021. Mark Navales/BenarNews

At least 17 people – mostly suspected Islamic militants – were killed during heavy fighting between government forces and BIFF insurgents in the southern Philippines at the weekend, the military said Monday.

The clashes began when some 30 member of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) attacked government soldiers who were patrolling near Shariff Saydona Mustapha town in Maguindanao province, according to a spokesman for the Army’s 6th Division.

“One soldier and 16 other BIFF militants were killed,” Lt. Col. John Paul Baldomar said. “The figures of fatalities from the enemy side were provided to us by civilians. We have their names.”

“The running gun-battles started Saturday and lasted until Sunday afternoon. Mopping up operations are ongoing,” he told BenarNews.

BIFF are guerrillas who broke away from the former separatist group Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), when the latter agreed to a peace deal with the government for an expanded autonomy in the Philippine south.

The MILF now controls the region and has been helping Manila fight against the BIFF and other militant organizations.

Baldomar said the military used artillery and called in air support against the militants, who are believed to be hiding out in a vast marshland that borders Shariff Saydona Mustapha.

The bodies of two of the 16 slain BIFF fighters have been recovered so far, he said. But a military intelligence report, including information provided by locals, indicated that 14 more militants had been killed in the gunfight.

The slain fighters were followers of Ustadz Karialan, one of three ranking commanders of the BIFF who has, however, not openly come out in support of the Islamic State extremist group. The two other BIFF leaders, Ismail Abubakar and Abu Turaife have pledged their allegiance to IS.

It was unclear if Karialan was among the militants killed, Baldomar said.

“Until today, our clearing operation in the area is ongoing,” he said, adding that army units had fired artillery toward the militants’ positions.

He said government forces were also bracing for possible retaliatory attacks.

“They are few, and we are not letting our guard down as we continue to intensify our campaign. In due time, they will be finished,” regional military commander Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy told reporters.

BIFF has a few hundred members and is concentrated mainly in central Mindanao Island, officials said.

In January, BIFF militants carried out two roadside bombings in the south that killed three and injured dozens of people. Two years ago, the group carried out a series of bomb attacks in the south, targeting a market and a restaurant that injured more than 24 people.

In 2017, hundreds of pro-IS fighters from Southeast Asia, the Middle East and elsewhere took over the southern Philippine city of Marawi for five months. Some 1,200 people were killed in a battle that ensued between the militants and government forces.

While BIFF did not send guerrillas to join that battle, it launched diversionary attacks at the time, according to officials.


Senate approves bill seeking fixed term for AFP chief, other top military officers

From Rappler (Sep 28, 2021): Senate approves bill seeking fixed term for AFP chief, other top military officers (By JAIRO BOLLEDO)

Senate Bill No. 2376 also prohibits the appointment of a former military officer as defense chief within a year of retirement or resignation

The Senate on Monday, September 27, passed on final reading a bill that seeks to impose a fixed three-year term for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief and other top military officers.

Senate Bill No. 2376 was unanimously passed on third and final reading after 23 senators backed it.

The bill aims to enhance the professionalization in the military by “strengthening the merit system and allowing the new leadership a longer period to implement reforms and institutionalize sound policies that will redound to the improvement of the organization.”

If passed, the measure would impose a fixed term of three years on the AFP chief, vice chief of staff, deputy chief of staff, and the commanding generals of the Army, Navy, and Air Force. The bill would also cover the military’s inspector general, as well as the chiefs of unified commands.

Under the proposed measure, these key officers would retire after the completion of their fixed term, regardless of age. At present, the mandatory retirement age is 56.

The fixed term, however, could be affected by scenarios such as promotion to AFP chief, relief from the post, or not occupying any position in the AFP Table of Organization.

The bill also sets a tour of duty of four years for the superintendent of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA), who would not be allowed to hold any other position in the AFP and would be compulsorily retired upon the completion of the term.

Retirement age

For officers holding the ranks of second lieutenant, ensign to colonel, and captain, there would be a compulsory retirement age of 56 to 59 or an accumulation of 30 years of “satisfactory active duty,” whichever comes earlier.

The bill also seeks to impose a retirement age of 59 or the maximum tenure in grade, whichever comes earlier, for military officers with the ranks of brigadier general, commodore to lieutenant general, and vice admiral.

For enlisted personnel, the bill seeks to impose a compulsory retirement age of 56 or upon completion of at least “30 years of satisfactory active duty.” For those commissioned under the Armed Forces Officer Personnel Act of 1984 or appointed in the Corps of Professors, a compulsory retirement age of 60 or completion of “20 years of satisfactory active duty” would be imposed.

The bill also prohibits retired or resigned AFP officers from being appointed as secretary of defense within a year of his/her retirement or resignation. According to Senator Panfilo Lacson, a former police general, the measure would guarantee professionalization in the military.

"The proposed stricter attrition system guarantees the succession of qualified and effective leaders in the AFP. This places a premium on professionalization and merit-based promotion and weeds out lame ducks in our military circles," Lacson said in a Monday statement.

Closing the 'revolving door' at AFP

The bill seeks to set a fixed term for top military officers to remove the prevailing “revolving door policy,” or appointing AFP chiefs to serve only for a short time – some even just months – or until their mandatory retirement. (READ: Quickie generals: The military's revolving door needs to be shut)

The policy has been practiced since the time of then-president Corazon Aquino, and has continued under President Rodrigo Duterte, who appointed his 10th – but not the last – AFP chief on July 31, General Jose Faustino Jr. who will serve for only four months, or until November 2021.

In his five years in office, Duterte has appointed 10 military chiefs so far – rivaling the 11 AFP chiefs named by Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in her nine-year presidency.

Lorenzana says short term of AFP chiefs ‘not good for military’

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana had earlier said that the short term of AFP chiefs is “not good” for the military. The defense chief added that since the AFP chief has short terms, the organization “sometimes loses its direction.” 


9 hurt in landmine blast near NGCP tower in Lanao del Sur

From Rappler (Sep 28, 2021): 9 hurt in landmine blast near NGCP tower in Lanao del Sur (By FROILAN GALLARDO)

The military says one of the soldiers securing workers of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines stepped on a landmine planted near the base of the transmission tower in Buadiposo Buntong town

Seven soldiers and two workers of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) were hurt following a landmine explosion in Lanao del Sur on Tuesday, September 28.

The explosion happened while an NGCP team, secured by soldiers, was working on one of the 138-kV transmission towers in Buadiposo Buntong town in Lanao del Sur.

Brigadier General Jose Maria Cuerpo, commander of the Marawi City-based 103rd Infantry Brigade, said two helicopters from the Philippine Air Force base in Lumbia, Cagayan de Oro, were sent to airlift the wounded soldiers and linemen.

Cuerpo said a third helicopter from the NGCP was also on the way to the area where the explosion happened.

Cuerpo said the transmission tower was not bombed, and that the explosive was planted in the area.

“Usually, the bomb is attached to the tower and exploded to topple it down. This is different. The bomb was planted to injure people,”
he said.

Cuerpo said the NGCP crew, escorted by Army soldiers, walked for two days to the hinterland area just to reach the 138-kV transmission tower.

“It was just for a regular checkup of the tower and the two linemen were accompanied by the soldiers for their security,” Cuerpo said.

The 138-kV transmission tower connects the Agus 1 Hydroelectric Plant to a relay station in Kibawe, Bukidnon, which allows the National Power Corporation and the NGCP to provide power to southern Mindanao.

Cuerpo said initial reports showed that one of the soldiers stepped on a pressure-activated landmine planted near the base of the transmission tower.

The military, he said, would investigate and identify who was responsible for the landmine explosion.

In a statement released by Beth Ladaga, NGCP corporate communications officer for northern Mindanao, the company said the explosion took place in a forested area in Buadiposo Buntong, Lanao del Sur, at around 7 am, and the seven soldiers and the two linemen were brought to a hospital.

The NGCP said it sent the crew there because two of its lines tripped off on September 22 and September 23.

“NGCP is fully cooperating with the local government unit and law enforcement agencies conducting the investigation,” NGCP said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack has claimed responsibility for it, but the Dawlah Islamiya-Maute terror group is known to operate in the area and has a history of bombing NGCP’s transmission towers.

In December 2015, a group of ABS-CBN journalists was attacked by motorcycle-riding Maute gunmen while doing a news story about an NGCP transmission tower in Lanao del Sur that was toppled down by a bomb.

Communist rebels are also known to operate in the area, according to the military.

NGCP said the incident only served to increase the burden of the public which suffers whenever power interruptions take place as a result of sabotage.

“Any attempt to hinder line clearing activities is a violation of the provisions under Republic Act 11361 or the Anti-Obstruction of Power Lines Act, and is punishable by up to 12 years imprisonment or fines up to P200,000, or both,” NGCP warned in its statement.

NGCP also appealed to government officials, community leaders, and concerned citizens to help identify the perpetrators.


Lorenzana, new US Chargé d’Affaires discuss capability upgrades of AFP

From Rappler (Sep 28, 2021): Lorenzana, new US Chargé d’Affaires discuss capability upgrades of AFP (By JAIRO BOLLEDO)

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and US Chargé d’Affaires Heather Variava also discuss the recent developments in the region

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Tuesday, September 28, met newly appointed US Chargé d’Affaires (CDA) Heather Variava to discuss the developments between the two countries’ military cooperation.

The two officials discussed the upcoming projects between the long-time allies, which include the US aid to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) modernization, according to the defense department.

“They also discussed updates on upcoming bilateral defense activities, logistics cooperation, particularly on the capability upgrades of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and the way ahead for the Philippines-US defense relations,”
the Department of National Defense (DND) said.

The two officials also talked about the recent developments in the region. The conversation was anchored on how the two countries would further improve their alliance, according to the DND.

This was the first time Lorenzana met Variava, since the latter’s appointment. On September 17, the US Embassy in the Philippines named Variava as the new CDA, replacing John Law. As the CDA, Variava would be the “official representative in the absence of an ambassador, representing the President of the United States in the host country.”

Earlier this month, Lorenzana visited the United States during the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT). The MDT binds the US and the Philippines to protect each other in times of crisis.

During his visit, Manila's defense chief revived his call for the review of the MDT. Lorenzana specifically mentioned three points that the Philippines and the US might consider to beef up the MDT.

Lorenzana revives call for review of PH-US Mutual Defense Treaty

The points included the acquisition of more advanced weapons. According to Lorenzana, the US should aid the Philippines in the purchase of more advanced weapons systems that will enable the Philippines to have “minimum deterrence” capability against threats.

Based on the data of the US Embassy in Manila, the Philippines is the largest recipient of US military assistance in the whole Indo-Pacific region. In just six years, from 2015 up to 2021, the Philippines already received more than P48.6 billion (around $1 billion) worth of security assistance from the US.


Tapaz raid ‘escapee’ surfaces

From Panay News (Sep 28, 2021): Tapaz raid ‘escapee’ surfaces (By Ruby Silubrico)

One of the escaped supporters of the New People’s Army (NPA) from the 2020 raid in Tapaz, Capiz turned himself to the 12th Infantry Battalion (12IB) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in Barangay Libot, Calinog town.

Fifty-nine-year-old Abelardo Diaz of Barangay Nayawan, Tapaz, Capiz surrendered around 10 a.m. on Sept. 26 through village chief Nonito Lingaya of Barangay Tacayan, Tapaz.

Diaz brought his .45-caliber pistol and five ammunitions, according to Army Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Jayson Estrada, 12IB commander.

Diaz faces a string of criminal cases to include eight counts of attempted murder with P120,000 bail each case, and violation of Republic Act 9516, or the unlawful possession of explosives with no bail recommended.

Diaz was among the subjects of the synchronized police and military operations on Dec. 30, 2020 in Calinog and adjacent Tapaz.

The raid was carried out by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 6, Police Regional Office 6 and 301st Infantry Battalion and resulted in the death of nine individuals and arrest of 16 others.

Police recovered a hand grenade inside Diaz’s house.

According to Estrada, Diaz joined the NPA on Jan. 5, 2021, days after the raid. He was recruited by Gaspar “Mayok” Matullano, secretary of front 14, Komiteng Rehiyon Panay based in Nayawan.

However, on Aug. 10 this year, Diaz absconded due to hunger.

“This is a good development. Ang mga miyembro nila naglabasan na at nag-surrender. Namulat na sa katotohanan na walang patutunguhan ang kanilang ipinaglalaban,” Estrada told Panay News.

Diaz was detained at the Tapaz police station.


‘REDS GO TECHY’ 3ID: Rebels ‘active’ in recruiting youth online

From Panay News (Sep 28, 2021): ‘REDS GO TECHY’ 3ID: Rebels ‘active’ in recruiting youth online (By Ruby Silubrico)

Rebels are invading the digital world to recruit more members, especially young people, according to the Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division (3ID).

“Sila (youth) ang target talaga ng mga rebelde,”
said Major General Benedict Arevalo, 3ID commander.

With mobility still restricted due to the coronavirus pandemic,
the New People’s Army (NPA) is riding on the virtual shift to entice the youth, according Arevalo.

Arevalo said
the rebels are using Facebook to recruit.

He encouraged parents to “watch over your children.”

Apart from recruitment, Arevalo said the rebels’ extortion activity also went digital.

“They resorted to extortion because they are suffering from hunger and lack of resources,” said Arevalo.

In fact, Arevalo said the NPA already sent letters of extortion to people based on cellular phones recovered in the recent encounter in Barangay Siya, Tapaz, Capiz.

“The pandemic really affected them. This coming elections wala silang makukuha. We remind politicians not to give them anything,” Arevalo said.

The rebels are weakening, according to Arevalo.

He cited the efforts of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) member agencies in ending the insurgency.

Arevalo also thanked the community “for giving tips” to the government forces that resulted in encounters, capture and surrender of NPA members.

“We are now facing two viruses, the NPA virus and COVID-19 virus and we have to face them squarely. We have to help one another to face and solve these problems. The AFP could not do it alone without the help of the people and other agencies concerned,” Arevalo said.


NGCP tower in Lanao Sur bombed

Posted to MindaNews (Sep 28, 2021): NGCP tower in Lanao Sur bombed (By FROILAN GALLARDO)

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews / 23 Sep) – An explosion occurred at one of the 138-KV transmission towers of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) in Buadiposo-Buntong town in Lanao del Sur Tuesday morning, injuring seven soldiers and two linemen.

NGCP transmission towers. MindaNews file photo by BOBBY TIMONERA

Brig. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo, commanding general of the Marawi-based 103rd Infantry Brigade, said two helicopters from the Philippine Air Force base in Lumbia, Cagayan de Oro and another chopper from NGCP were deployed to extricate the wounded soldiers and linemen.

He said the transmission tower was not toppled.

The NGCP said in a statement that the explosion occurred 7 a.m. in a forested area in Buadiposo-Buntong.

NGCP said their personnel and military escorts were conducting an inspection of the Agus 2-Kibawe 138KV lines 1 and 2, which tripped last September 22 and 3, respectively. The Agus 2 hydro plant is situated in Saguiaran, Lanao del Sur while Kibawe is a municipality in Bukidnon.

“The company stresses that any incident meant to interrupt the delivery of power transmission services, only serve to increase the burden of the public, which must suffer through power interruptions when lines or towers are affected. Any attempt to hinder line clearing activities is a violation of the provisions under Republic Act 11361 or the Anti-Obstruction of Power Lines Act, and is punishable by up to 12 years imprisonment or fines up to P200,000, or both,” NGCP warned.

Cuerpo said the NGCP linemen, escorted by a security detail of seven Army soldiers, walked for two days to the 138-KV transmission tower in the mountains in Buadiposo-Buntong town.

“It was a regular checkup of the tower and usually the linemen have a squad of soldiers to accompany them for their security,” Cuerpo said.

Cuerpo said the initial report they received was that one of the soldiers stepped on a pressure-activated landmine planted on the base of the transmission tower.

He said they are conducting an investigation on who is responsible for the landmine.

Cuerpo discounted the possibility that communist rebels or members of the Dawlah Islamiya Maute terror group were responsible.

“Usually the bomb is attached to the tower and exploded to topple it down. This is different,” he said.

Cuerpo said NGCP transmission towers are always the subject of numerous attacks in the past and those responsible were mostly disgruntled landowners.

NGCP, in its statement, expressed “its appeal to the local and national government, local community leaders, and the public, to help identify the perpetrators, and to negotiate with uncooperative landowners, to prevent longer power interruptions. The public may report suspicious activities in the vicinity of its transmission lines and facilities to the NGCP Tip Hotline at 0917-8476427 or 0918-8476427.”


PH Army has new public affairs chief

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 28, 2021): PH Army has new public affairs chief (By Priam Nepomuceno) 

Philippine Army Public Affairs Office chief Col. Xerxes Trinidad (Photo courtesy of the Philippine Army)

The Philippine Army (PA) has a new public affairs office chief, Col. Xerxes Trinidad, replacing Col. Ramon Zagala who is now the spokesperson of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The traditional turnover of office was presided by PA chief-of-staff Brig. Gen. Robert Capulong.

Before being appointed as Office of the Army Chief Public Affairs (OACPA), Trinidad was assistant chief-of-staff for civil-military operations (G-7) of the 4th Infantry Division.

He also served as 36th Infantry Battalion commander and 402nd Infantry Brigade executive officer.

Trinidad is also a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1995 and holds a Masters in Public Management Major in Development Security from the Development Academy of the Philippines.

He recently graduated with a Master's in National Security Administration from the National Defense College of the Philippines.

Meantime, Zagala, who served in OACPA for more than two years, was recently appointed AFP spokesperson.

Zagala worked closely with celebrity reservists and personalities in promoting the PA's thrust and programs.

He also facilitated the special enlistment of 12 journalists and 11 broadcasters to help the PA's public information program.


Duterte ‘concerned’ over AUKUS nuclear submarine deal

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 28, 2021): Duterte ‘concerned’ over AUKUS nuclear submarine deal (By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos)

President Rodrigo Duterte (Presidential Photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte has raised concern over the new trilateral security pact among Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States (AUKUS), Malacañang said on Tuesday.

In a virtual press conference, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte would meet with his Cabinet to discuss the AUKUS alliance and raise the issue, as he worried the trilateral pact could trigger a “nuclear arms race”.

“He (Duterte) expressed concern about a regional nuclear arms race. But he will discuss this further with the Cabinet and will come up with a clear position after the meeting of the Cabinet,”
Roque said.

AUKUS alliance is seen to counter China’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific, specifically in the South China Sea where it lays claim on nearly 80 percent of the strategic water under its so-called nine-dash line that has been invalidated by the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration’s 2016 ruling.

The pact also aims to provide Australia the technology to build nuclear-powered submarines, a partnership denounced by China because of its supposed risks to intensify the arms race and undermine international non-proliferation efforts.

On Sept. 17, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana had a telephone conversation with Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton to discuss the AUKUS alliance and Canberra’s acquisition of nuclear-powered submarines.

Dutton told Lorenzana the intention to acquire submarines is not to be armed with nuclear weapons but to develop Australia’s capability to protect its territories as well as that of its friends in the region.

Lorenzana, on the other hand, acknowledged Australia’s right to improve its submarine defense capability.

Last week, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. also welcomed the AUKUS partnership, citing its benefit to maintaining peace and security in Southeast Asia.

Roque on Monday expressed hope that the trilateral pact would not violate the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty, an agreement inked by the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 1995 to preserve the region as a nuclear weapon-free zone and free from all other weapons of mass destruction.


RA 9500, not UP-DND Accord, protects academic freedom: Herbosa

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 28, 2021): RA 9500, not UP-DND Accord, protects academic freedom: Herbosa (By Priam Nepomuceno)

Dr. Ted Herbosa, former executive vice president of the University of the Philippines System (PNA File photo)

For former executive vice president of the University of the Philippines (UP) System, Dr. Ted Herbosa, House Bill 10171 institutionalizing the 1989 UP-Department of National Defense (DND) Accord does not protect academic freedom.

Herbosa said UP's academic freedom is already guaranteed by Republic Act 9500 also known as "The University of the Philippines Charter of 2008".

"Actually, it (academic freedom) is already incorporated in the UP Charter. So may batas na nagpapalawig nitong academic freedom (So there is already a law calling for the strengthening of academic freedom),"
Herbosa said during Monday's episode of "Tagged! Debunking Lies by Telling the Truth".

House Bill 10171 does not ensure academic freedom protects the lawless elements present in any of the UP campuses.

"Ano ang sini-secure niya? Ang sini-secure niya ay iyong masasamang tao sa loob ng isang campus (What is it securing? It is securing the lawless elements present in a campus)," said Herbosa, who is also a special adviser to the National Task Force Against Covid-19.

He added that academic freedom is vested in the institution and not the people in it.

"Ang may academic freedom ay ang institusyon. So lahat ng unibersidad, lahat ng institutions of higher education na under sa Pilipinas ay may academic freedom po. Lahat sila ay layag na madiskusyon ang rebolusyon, ang mga iba’t ibang kaisipan, communism, socialism, capitalism, democracy, federalism – puwede nilang i-discuss iyan in the setting of a classroom (Institutions have academic freedom. All universities, all institutions of higher learning in the Philippines have academic freedom. They all have the right or freedom to discuss different thoughts like communism, socialism, capitalism, federalism, they can discuss that in the classroom setting)," he added.

A bill institutionalizing the 1989 UP-DND Accord into the UP Charter on Sept. 21 hurdled third reading approval at the House of Representatives.

House Bill 10171, which seeks to amend Section 11 of Republic Act 9500, was passed with 179 affirmative votes.

It also seeks to prevent state security forces, such as the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), from entering and enforcing its operations in all UP campuses without prior notice to “the President or the Chancellor of the constituent university or the dean of the regional unit concerned” except “in cases of hot pursuit and similar occasions or emergencies.”

It mandates university officials, whenever requested by law enforcers, to extend the necessary assistance in law enforcement within the premises of the UP campuses.

Herbosa said many of the congressmen voted for the House bill as they are not really aware of the real meaning of academic freedom.

As former executive vice president of the UP System, Herbosa said he is aware of other things than communist recruitment going on the campuses.

"Pero ang naging problema natin ay dahil mayroong (UP-DND Accord), alam ninyo bang dumami doon sa mga residential area ng UP Diliman ang sugal, ang drugs. Mayroon diyang illegal na sabungan, hindi po nahihinto iyan; mayroon diyang pumapasok na nagpu-push ng drugs, ng iligal na droga – hindi rin nahihinto iyan (But our problem when the (UP-DND Accord) was still existing, incidents of illegal gamblings, illegal drugs climbed in the residential areas of UP Diliman. There was also illegal cockfighting, it was not halted, there were also instances of pushers entering and selling illegal drugs, these were not stopped)," he added.

These are the bad effects of the UP-DND Accord and Herbosa said he is in agreement with Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana who called for its abrogation last year, 32 years after it was signed on January 30, 1989.

It was effectively terminated effective Jan. 21 with the defense chief calling the arrangement "obsolete".

Lorenzana said the agreement was used by the Communist Party of the Philippines - New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) to turn UP into a breeding ground of "intransigent individuals and groups whose extremist beliefs have inveigled students to join their ranks to fight against the government."

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.


CTG recruitment will thrive if UP-DND accord reinstated: groups

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 28, 2021): CTG recruitment will thrive if UP-DND accord reinstated: groups (By Marita Moaje)

ANTI-REDS. Protesters against the University of the Philippines–Department of National Defense accord rally outside the Senate building in Pasay City on Tuesday (Sept. 28, 2021). They said the State University will become a haven for terrorists once the UP Security Bill is passed. (PNA photo by Avito Dalan)

Concerned civil society organizations protested outside the Senate building on Tuesday to denounce a bill that will reinstate the University of the Philippines – Department of National Defense (UP – DND) accord.

The groups said Senate Bill No. 2002 will make UP a haven for communist terrorist groups (CTGs) as it grants minimal intrusion into the state university that could pave the way for recruitment of students.

Except during emergency cases or hot pursuit, the bill mentioned that no law enforcement agencies and members of the police and military shall enter UP-Diliman premises and other regional campuses.

If the request for assistance is granted, only uniformed personnel will be allowed in, except when the situation specifies otherwise.

“To the senators, we, parents and members of various civil societies, appeal to each one of you, please critically analyze the implication of the bill to our children being prone to CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front) recruitment. Don’t destroy their future by having this UP Security Bill passed,”
read the statement of the Liga Independencia Pilipinas (LIPI), League of Parents of the Philippines, and League of Youth for Peace Advancement.

LIPI secretary general, Jose Antonio Goitia, who spoke on behalf of the protesters, said hundreds or even thousands of families have already been destroyed by the CPP-NPA-NDF.

Passing the bill would further strengthen CTGs and destroy the future of the Filipino youth, he added.

“Alam naman natin na ang CPP-NPA ay isang criminal organization at hindi na ito katulad ng dati na may mga prinsipyo. Idineklara na silang terrorist organization ng iba pang mga bansa. Hindi namin maintindihan kung bakit pinapayagan pa natin itong magpatuloy (We all know that the CPP-NPA is a criminal organization and no longer has principles unlike before. It has been declared a terrorist organization by other countries. What we don’t understand why we still allow them to thrive),” Goitia said in an interview.

No UP student, faculty or employee can be put under custodial investigation without permission from university officials under the accord.

Senators Joel Villanueva, Nancy Binay, Grace Poe, Risa Hontiveros, Miguel Zubiri, and Sonny Angara co-authored the bill that seeks to amend Republic Act 9500, or the University of the Philippines Charter.

In January this year, the DND terminated the 1989 UP-DND Accord.

Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the agreement signed by former president Fidel Ramos and then UP president, the late Jose Abueva, was abrogated so the DND could perform its mandate to protect students from CTG recruitment.

The DND said clandestine recruitment takes place inside UP campuses nationwide, using the UP-DND accord as a shield.

The House of Representatives passed its version of the bill on Sept. 21 with 179 affirmative votes and no abstentions or negative votes.

After the abrogation, Commission on Higher Education Chairman Prospero de Vera III said the deal was “rich in intention but short on details, and is therefore prone to differing interpretations”.

“As a faculty member of UP for close to four decades, as Vice President for five years and Chairman of the Board of Regents for four years, I assert that the implementation of the DND-UP Accord was destined to be problematic," he said then.

De Vera said there was "no clear detailed operational details" to implement the provisions of the pact” while the Joint Monitoring Group composed of UP regents and administrators, military and police officials "has not met regularly to determine compliance with the agreement, review alleged violations, determine appropriate penalties, and recommend revisions in the Accord given the changing times".

The Philippines' Anti-Terrorism Council has designated the CPP, NPA, and NDF as terrorist groups.

The European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines also listed the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization.


EU bats for 'free, open' maritime supply routes in Indo-Pacific

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 28, 2021): EU bats for 'free, open' maritime supply routes in Indo-Pacific (By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora)

The European Union Delegation in Manila on Tuesday reiterated its commitment to securing "free and open" maritime supply routes in the Indo-Pacific region.

In a virtual forum, EU Ambassador Luc Véron said the bloc's new Indo-Pacific strategy seeks to contribute to the region's stability, security, prosperity, and sustainable development, in line with the principles of the rule of law and international law.

"Our strategy is one of cooperation, not confrontation, focusing on key challenges like the pandemic, climate change, digital, and security," he said.

"The EU is committed to secure free and open maritime supply routes in the Indo-Pacific, in full compliance with international law, in particular, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), in the interest of all," he added.

Veron said the EU strongly opposes any unilateral actions that could undermine regional stability and the international rules-based order, citing the statement EU issued in April 2021 following the swarming of some 200 Chinese vessels in the Whitsun Reef.

Meanwhile, Veron said the bloc supports the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean)-led process towards an effective and substantive Code of Conduct on the South China Sea.

He said the EU's commitments in the region have always been clear --to foster a strategic partnership with Asean and serve as a "staunch defender of the rules-based international system".

Veron did not provide further details but he shared that the EU has "started to support the Philippines in the maritime domain awareness area".

Aside from fostering cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, Veron said the bloc also continues to step up its contribution to the global pandemic response by contributing to the COVAX Facility, which has already distributed millions of vaccine doses to low- and middle-income countries, including the Philippines.

He said the EU, its member states, and financial institutions will continue to step up their contribution to the international response to the pandemic.

"The EU with its member states is on track to provide hundreds of millions of Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) vaccine doses by the end of 2021, mainly through COVAX, to countries, which need them most. In addition, the EU and its member states are lead contributors to the COVAX Facility with close to €3 billion pledged to date," he added.

Sharing many interests from vaccine cooperation to rebuilding economies, Veron said the EU looks forward to increasing its engagement in the region, particularly with the Asean.


Kalinaw News: NPAs on the Verge of Collapse

Posted to Kalinaw News (Sep 28, 2021): NPAs on the Verge of Collapse

CAMP CAPINPIN, Tanay, Rizal – Two NPA members yielded to authorities of Region 4B early morning on September 27, 2021, two (2) firearms and other war materials, while others also withdrew their support from the Communist Terrorist Group and submitted themselves to authorities in Region 4A.

A member of Komite Larangang Gerilya MAV of Sub-Regional Military Area 4D of the Southern Tagalog Regional Party Committee surrendered 8:00 a.m. to the authorities of Occidental Mindoro, bringing along with him one (1) Caliber .45 Pistol and one (1) improvised explosive device. Likewise, at 9:30 a.m, another NPA member from the same Komite Larangang Gerilya of the same province who surrendered to local government officials last August 26, 2021, has also yielded one (1) M16 rifle.

Likewise, it can be recalled that on August 26, 2021, 46 mass base supporters from General Nakar, Quezon withdrew support to the communist terrorist group through the Barangay Task Force-ELCAC of Barangay Lumutan of the said town.

The surrenderers all have the same thing in common for returning to the folds of the law. First is that they have come to realize that bearing arms is not the solution to the problem of society; second is that the NPA is a corrupt organization that has misled them to believe in false promises and hopes. But most importantly, they have realized that the government is sincere in pursuing genuine and lasting peace. With these recent developments, the New People’s Army in Southern Tagalog is headed to, if not is already at the verge of collapse.

Major General Rowen S Tolentino the commander of the 2nd Infantry Division of the Philippine Army expressed his gratitude to the local chief executives for their significant contribution in putting an end to the country’s insurgency problem saying, “Sa atin pong mga halal na opisyal ng rehiyon 4A at 4B, salamat po sa inyong tulong sa ating mga kababayan na nais magbalik loob sa ating pamahalaan. Nawa po ay atin itong ipagpatuloy para sa ganoon po ay tuluyan nang maging mapayapa ang ating mga pamayanan.”

The developments in the communities were brought about by the efforts of the ELCAC task forces from the regional down to the barangay level, that became institutionalized through Executive Order Number 70 signed by His Excellency President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on December 4, 2018, that aimed at ending the communist insurgency in the country.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City Contact us: kalinawnews@cmoregiment.com]


CPP/Ang Bayan Daily News & Analysis: Barat at mapanghating alawans, tinanggihan ng mga frontliner

Ang Bayan Daily News and Analysis (Tagalog edition) posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 28, 2021): Barat at mapanghating alawans, tinanggihan ng mga frontliner


Tinanggihan ng Alliance of Health Workers (AHW) noong Lunes ang panukala ng Department of Health na mamahagi ng “singular allowance” (isang tipo lamang ng alawans) na nagkakahalaga ng kakarampot na ₱3,000 hanggang ₱9,000 batay sa antas ng eksposyur sa Covid-19 ng manggagawa sa kalusugan. Ipinanukala ito para balewalain ang mga batas na nag-oobliga sa gubyerno na bigyan ng special risk allowance, active hazard duty pay, at alawans sa pagkain, akomodasyon at transportasyon ang mga frontliner.

“Ang pakana na ito ay mapanghati at may diskriminasyon,” ani Robert Mendoza, pambansang pangulo ng grupo.

Aniya, isang tipo na lamang ng benepisyo ang ibibigay sa mga manggagawang pangkaluusgan, sa halip ng kasalukuyang tatlo. Ibibigay ito batay sa iba’t ibang kategorya at may iba-ibang halaga. Hindi rin lahat ay mabibigyan nito. Sa 1.8 milyong manggagawang pangkalusugan sa kasalukuyan, 526,727 lamang ang nakalista.

Binatikos din ng grupo ang ipinapanukalang klasipikasyon ng eksposyur sa bayrus, na tinawag nilang “hindi katanggap-tanggap.” Anila maaaring tamaan ng bayrus ang sinuman, high-risk man o hindi ang ospital. Ayon sa klasipikasyon, ₱3,000 lamang ang nakalaan para sa mga manggagawang “low risk”, habang ₱6,000 hanggang ₱9,000 naman ang para sa “medium risk” at “high risk.”

Iginiit ng grupo na ang dapat gawin ng DOH ay bigyan ang mga manggagawang pangkalusugan sa lahat ng ospital (pribado at publiko) ng ₱5,000 na special risk allowance kada buwan, regular man o kontraktwal. Iginiit din nila na ang ibigay na hazard pay ay ipirmi sa ₱3,000 kada buwan at bigyan ang lahat ng manggagawang pangkalusugan ng alawans para sa pagkain, seguro at transportasyon nang hanggang ₱38,000 kada buwan.

Ipinanawagan din nila ang iba pang benepisyo tulad ng kumpensasyon para sa mga nahawa ng bayrus at death benefits para sa pamilya ng mga namatay dahil sa bayrus.

Ipinahayag din nila ang kanilang suporta sa nakasampang mga panukala sa Senado na Covid-19 Benefits for Health Workers Act of 2021 at Allowances and Benefits for Healthcare Workers of 2021.

[In the face of the rapidly changing political and economic situation in the Philippines, as well as around the world, the newspaper Ang Bayan publishes daily news and analysis on key issues facing the proletariat and the Filipino people, as well as the oppressed people among others. t other corners of the world. Here you will find the latest news and articles of Ang Bayan.]


CPP/Ang Bayan Daily News & Analysis: Pinsalang idudulot ng black sand mining sa Lingayan Gulf, pinangangambahan

Ang Bayan Daily News and Analysis (Tagalog edition) posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 28, 2021): Pinsalang idudulot ng black sand mining sa Lingayan Gulf, pinangangambahan


Pinababawi ng mamamayan ng Pangasinan sa ilalim ng Pangasinan People’s Strike for the Environment ang permit na iginawad ng upisina ni Rodrigo Duterte sa Vanadium Resources (Phils), subsidyaryo ng isang kumpanyang Australian, na magmina ng black sand o magnetitte sa prubinsya. Ang permit na may petsang Nobyembre 25, 2020 ay pirmado ni Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea at nagbibigay-laya sa pagmina ng kumpanya ng 5 milyong metriko toneladang black sand sa susunod na 25 taon.

Kasalukuyang may pitong operasyon ng pagmimina ng magnetite sa bansa. Kalakhan sa hinuhukay na buhangin ay inieksport sa China para sa pagpoproseso.

Sa Pangasinan, sasaklawin ng pagmimina ng magnetite ang 10,000 ektaryang karagatan sa baybayin ng 26 barangay sa limang bayan (Sual, Labrador, Lingayen, Binmaley at Dagupan CIty.)  Ang erya ay napagigitnaan ng dalawang protektadong lugar — ang Alaminos Hundred Islands National Park at ang Agoo-Damortis Protective Landscape and Seascape.

Dahil maaaring magsimula ang paghuhukay ng black sand 500 metro mula sa baybayin, malaki ang magiging epekto nito sa pangisdaan sa lugar. Sisirain nito ang tinatayang 3,000 fish pen ng bangus na nagpoprodyus ng 125,000 hanggang 150,000 metriko toneladang bangus kada taon. pektado rin pangisdaang munisipal na pinagkukunan ng kabuhayan ng inatayang 5,000 maliliit na mangingisda. Isa ang Lingayen Gulf sa mayor na pangisdaan ng bansa.

Dagdag dito ang mas matagalang epekto ng pagmimina sa mga coral reef at sea grass na nagsisilbing kanlungan ng itlog at fry (bagong pisa) ng iba’t ibang klaseng isda.

Kung hindi pipigilan ang pangwawasak sa karagatan, malalagay sa peligro ang seguridad sa pagkain at kabuhayan ng mga Pangasinense, ayon sa mga grupo ng mangingisda, negosyante at tagapagtanggol sa kalikasan. HIndi nila ubos maintindihan kung bakit papayagan ang isang proyekto na wawasak sa pinagkukunan ng suplay ng isda sa harap ng napipintong kakulangan ng suplay nito.

“Nasa black sand na kukunin ng mina ang mga itlog, larvae at fry sa Lingayen Gulf,” ayon sa isang grupo ng mga negosyante sa lugar. “Kapag hinukay at kinuha nila ito, tiyak na mamamatay ang mga itlog, gayundin ang maliliit na isda.” Noong 1993, idineklara ng dating Pres. Fidel Ramos ang Lingayen Gulf bilang “environmentally critical area” at itinakda ang lugar para sa produksyon ng isda at iba pang produktong pandagat at pagpreserba ng genetic diversity.

Nangangamba rin ang mga syentista kung saan itatapon ng kumpanya ang dumi at basurang tubig at putik na gagamitin sa paghihiwalay ng black sand mula sa ibang bato o materyal ng dagat.

[In the face of the rapidly changing political and economic situation in the Philippines, as well as around the world, the newspaper Ang Bayan publishes daily news and analysis on key issues facing the proletariat and the Filipino people, as well as the oppressed people among others. t other corners of the world. Here you will find the latest news and articles of Ang Bayan.]


CPP/Ang Bayan Daily News & Analysis: Pagkalugi ng mga magsasaka sa kontrabandong carrot

Ang Bayan Daily News and Analysis (Tagalog edition) posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 27, 2021): Pagkalugi ng mga magsasaka sa kontrabandong carrot



Balita ngayon ang pagbaha ng inismagel (kontrabando) na carrot sa mga lokal na pamilihan sa Metro Manila at iba pang bahagi ng bansa. Ikinabahala ito ng lokal na mga magsasaka, pangunahin na ang mga magsasaka sa Benguet na pinagmumulan ng suplay ng carrot sa buong bansa. Nahaharap sila sa matinding kumpetisyon at pagkalugi dahil kasalukuyang mas mura ang presyo ng imported na carrot (₱25) kumpara sa kanilang produkto (₱50). Apektado nito maging ang mga trader o mga negosyanteng nagdedeliber ng suplay sa mga pamilihan. Karamihan sa kanila ay hindi pa nakababawi mula sa pagkalugi dulot ng pagkasira ng kanilang mga produkto noong nakaraang taon dulot ng mga restriksyon sa pagbabyahe ng mga produkto na ipinataw ng rehimen nang magsimula ang pandemya.

Anila, iligal na ipinapasok ang mga imported na carrot. Bagamat walang permit na inilabas ang Department of Agriculture para sa importasyon ng anumang preskong gulay, naglipana ang mga imported na carrot hindi lamang sa Metro Manila kundi pati na rin sa Cebu at Cagayan de Oro City. Ang inismagel na mga carrot ay nakalagay sa mga kahon na may palatandaang nagmula ang mga ito sa China.

Pangunahing ibinabagsak ng mga ismagler ang mga carrot sa mga bodega sa Divisoria sa Maynila. Iligal itong ibinebenta ng mga sindikato sa iba’t ibang palengke sa bansa. Sa Cebu, tinatayang apat na container van ng carrot ang ibinubhos ng mga sindikato sa mga pamilihan sa prubinsya kada linggo. Kadalasang sinasamantala ng mga sindikato ang lean season (panahon mula Setyembre hanggang Pebrero kung kailan mahina ang produksyon at mataas ang presyo ng lokal na gulay) para itodo ang kanilang pagbebenta at magkamal ng malaking tubo sa kapinsalaan ng mga lokal na magsasaka. Anila, taun-taon nilang kinahaharap at inirereklamo ang problemang ito. Pansamantala lamang itong humuhupa tuwing nabubunyag ang kanilang mga reklamo sa publiko. Paglipas ng isang panahon, mauulit ang pagbaha ng inismagel na gulay sa mga palengke.

Ayon sa isang trader, tinatayang aabot sa 70% ang ibinagsak ng kanilang benta sa nakalipas na mga araw o mula 100 sako ng carrot kada araw tungong 30 sako na lamang. Ang isang sako ng carrot ay tumitimbang ng 80 hanggang 90 kilo.

Liban sa pinsalang dulot nito sa kabuhayan, posible ring magdulot ang pagkain sa mga carrot na ito ng banta sa kalusugan dahil hindi ito nasusuri. Kabilang sa mga dapat suriin sa pag-iimport ang mga pesteng umaapekto at antas ng naiwang pestisidyo sa mga produktong gulay para matiyak na ligtas kainin ang mga ito.

Ayon sa pinakahuling datos, nakapagprodyus ang bansa ng 65,069 metriko tonelada (MT) ng carrot noong 2019, mas mababa nang 917 MT kumpara nang unang maupo sa poder si Duterte noong 2016. Malaking bahagi (89%) ng lokal na suplay ng carrot ay mula sa Cordillera (58,166 MT). Sa kabuuan, 4,551 ektarya ang kabuuang saklaw ng mga sakahan ng carrot sa buong bansa, 70% nito ay matatagpuan sa Cordillera. Karaniwang ang kada ektarya ng sakahan ng carrot ay nakapagpoprodyus ng 14,298 kilo.

Bago pa man ang pandemya, patuloy nang bumabagsak ang kita ng mga magsasaka ng carrot dulot ng pagtaas ng gastos sa produksyon at barat na presyo sa pagbili ng kanilang mga produkto. Sa loob lamang ng tatlong taon sa ilalim ng rehimeng Duterte, bumagsak nang 27% ang abereyds na taunang netong kita ng mga magsasaka kada ektarya mula ₱344,302 noong 2017 tungong ₱251,517 noong 2019. Bumagsak din ang presyo sa pagbili ng mga carrot mula sa mga magsasaka nang 19% mula ₱31.5 tungong ₱25.47 kada kilo sa parehong panahon.

[In the face of the rapidly changing political and economic situation in the Philippines, as well as around the world, the newspaper Ang Bayan publishes daily news and analysis on key issues facing the proletariat and the Filipino people, as well as the oppressed people among others. t other corners of the world. Here you will find the latest news and articles of Ang Bayan.]


CPP/Ang Bayan Daily News & Analysis: Mga progresibong partido, nag-anunsyo na ng kanilang mga nominado para sa Kongreso

Ang Bayan Daily News and Analysis (Tagalog edition) posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 27, 2021): Mga progresibong partido, nag-anunsyo na ng kanilang mga nominado para sa Kongreso


Nag-anunsyo noong Setyembre 26 ang mga progresibong partidong Bayan Muna, Anakpawis Partylist, Gabriela Women’s Party, Kabataan Partylist at ACT Teachers Partylist — kilala bilang blokeng Makabayan — ng kumpletong listahan ng kanilang mga nominado sa Kongreso para sa halalang 2022.

Para sa Bayan Muna, inihalal si Teddy Casino bilang unang nominado nito, kasunod sina Rep. Ferdinand Gaite (kasalukuyang kinatawan nito sa Kongreso at presidente ng COURAGE) bilang pangalawang nominado at si Amirah Lidasan, pangkalahatang kalihim ng Moro Christian Peoples Alliance at kumbenor ng alyansa ng mga katutubo na Sandugo. Pinangalanan din ng grupo sina Atty. Kristi Conti ng National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers, Pepito Pico, John Ruiz at Roman Polintan bilang dagdag na mga nominado.   

Ang kasalukuyang mga kinatawan nito sa Kongreso na sina Rep. Carlos Zarate at Rep. Eufemia Cullamat ay inihalal bilang presidente at pangalawang bise-presidente para sa Mindanao ng partido.

Muling inihalal ng Gabriela Women’s Party si Rep. Arlene Brosas bilang unang nominado. Tatayong pangalawa at pangatlong nominado sina Dr. Jean Lindo a Lucy Francisco.

Inihalal ng Anakpawis Party-list ang dating kalihim ng Department of Agrarian Reform at kinatawan nito mula 2004 hanggang 2013 na si Rafael “Ka Paeng” Mariano bilang unang nominado. Sina Lana Linaban ng Kilusang Mayo Uno at Francisco Mariazeta Jr ang tatayong pangalawa at pangatlong nominado ng partido.

Pinili rin ng ACT Teachers Party-list ang kasalukuyan nitong kinatawan sa Kongreso na si Rep. France Castro bilang unang nominado. Sina Antonio Tinio, na kumatawan sa partido sa Kongreso mula 2010 hanggang 2019, ang pangalawang nominado at si Dr. David Michael San Juan ang pangatlo. Nominado rin bilang ikaapat at ikalimang kinatawan sina Helene Dimaukom at Fabian Hallig.

Si Raoul Manuel, dating presidente ng National Union of Students of the Philippines, ang pinili ng Kabataan Partylist bilang unang nominado. Sina Angelica Galimba, Jandeli Roperos, Jianred Faustino, Jayvie Cabajes, Vince Alloso at RJ Ledesma ang magsisilbing pangalawa hanggang pampitong nominado ng partido.

Una nang inanunsyo ang pagtakbo ni dating Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares sa Senado. Sinuportahan naman ng Anakpawis Partylist ang kandidatura sa pagkasenador ni Bong Labog ng Kilusang Mayo Uno. Nakatakda silang pormal na hirangin bilang mga kandidato sa kumbensyon ng Makabayan ngayong araw.

[In the face of the rapidly changing political and economic situation in the Philippines, as well as around the world, the newspaper Ang Bayan publishes daily news and analysis on key issues facing the proletariat and the Filipino people, as well as the oppressed people among others. t other corners of the world. Here you will find the latest news and articles of Ang Bayan.]


CPP/Ang Bayan Daily News & Analysis: Sa ika-49 anibersaryo ng martial law: Duterte inihalintulad sa dating diktador na si Marcos

Ang Bayan Daily News and Analysis (Tagalog edition) posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 27, 2021): Sa ika-49 anibersaryo ng martial law: Duterte inihalintulad sa dating diktador na si Marcos


Ginunita sa iba’t-ibang bahagi ng bansa at sa ibayong dagat sa pamamagitan ng mga protesta, pagtitipon at pahayag ng pakikiisa ang madidilim na taon ng batas militar ng diktadurang US-Marcos noong Setyembre 21.

Sa pahayag ng Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan), isinaad nito ang kahalagahan ng paggunita sa batas militar ni Marcos dahil sa pag-iral ng hibo ng pasismo at mga banta ng pananatili sa pwesto ng naghaharing tiranong si Duterte. Ayon sa grupo, kinakasangkapan ng mga tirano, tulad ni Duterte at kanyang idolong si Marcos, ang dis-impormasyon at rebisyunismo sa kasaysayan para makapanatili sa kapangyarihan.

Lantad din ang pagkakahawig ng dalawang tiranong lider ani Neri Colmenares, lider ng Bayan Muna Partylist. Ayon kay Colmenares, ginagamit ni Duterte, tulad ni Marcos, ang buong militar para ipataw ang pasistang kontrol sa gubyerno, at pinamumutawi nito ang korapsyon at kroniyismo para pahigpitin ang kapit sa mga kaaalyado.

Nagpahayag naman ng pakikiisa si Vice President Leni Robredo sa mamamayang Pilipino sa paggunita sa batas miliar. Binigyang-diin ng bise presidente ang mahalagang tungkulin ng bawat Pilipino para patuloy na buhayin ang tunay na nangyari sa panahon ng batas militar sa kabila ng pagpupumilit na baluktutin ang kasaysayan. Sa nauna niyang pahayag, sinabi niyang ang panunumbalik ng mga Marcos sa Malacanang ang isa sa mga dahilan na maaaring magtulak sa kanya na kumandidato pagkapangulo sa eleksyong 2022.
Protestang bayan

Pinamunuaan ng grupong Bayan at Campaign Against the Return of the Marcoses and Martial Law (CARMMA) ang mayor na protestang bayan sa Metro Manila bilang paggunita sa batas militar sa Liwasang Bonifacio sa lunsod ng Manila. Lumahok sa protesta ang delegasyon ng mga progresibong grupo mula pa sa Central Luzon, mga grupong kabataan, magsasaka, kababaihan at iba pa.

Bago ang sentralisadong programa sa Liwasan, ikinasa ang mga desentralisadong aksyon sa ibang bahagi ng Metro Manila. Hinarang ng mga pulis ang mga nagprotestasa ilang bahagi tulad ng sa Sta. Cruz sa Manila. Binomba sila ng tubig para itaboy. Nagresulta ito sa pagsisiksikan, bagay na iniiwasan sa panahon ng pandemya.

Sa Luzon, naglunsad ng mga piket at demonstrasyon ang mga grupong pambansa-demokratiko sa Baguio City, Calamba City sa Laguna, sa Cavite at Batangas. Nagkaroon din ng pagkilos sa Cagayan Valley.

Isinabay naman sa paggunita sa batas militar ang pangangalampag ng mga manggagawang pangkalusugan para sa makataong pagtrato sa kanilang hanay sa isang demonstrasyon noong Setyembre 21 sa Bacolod City. Isang araw bago nito, nagpiket din ang mga magsasaka sa ilalim ng Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP)-Negros sa sentro ng Bacolod City para gunitain ang Escalante Massacre na naganap noong batas militar.

Inilunsad din ang mga protesta sa tatlong lokasyon sa Cebu City, sa Iloilo City, at Freedom Park, Davao City. Bukod sa mga pisikal na pagtitipon, maraming indibidwal rin ang nakiisa sa mga protestang online at mga pag-aaral hinggil sa mga paglabag sa karapatang-tao at pagpapahirap ng batas militar. Mayroon ding pagkilos at paggunita ng mga nakaligtas sa batas militar sa Cagayan de Oro City.
Paggunita sa ibayong-dagat

Koordinadong mga protesta ang inilunsad ng mga organisasyong nabubuklod sa ilalim ng International League of People’s Struggles (ILPS) bilang pakikiisa sa mga Pilipino sa paggunita sa batas militar.

Nagtungo sa embahada ng Pilipinas sa Korea ang Korean-Philippine Human Rights Network para ipanawagan ang pagtigil sa ekstrahudisyal na pagpaslang ng estado sa mamamayan. Nagtipon rin ang mga Pilipino sa United Kingdom, HongKong, Montreal sa Canada, France, The Netherlands, Chicago, Manhattan sa New York, Seattle, at Belgium.

Sa kabuuang tala ng ILPS, nagkaroon ng iba’t ibang pagkilos sa mahigit 12 bansa ang mga Pilipino at dayuhang mga tagasuporta. Nagkaroon din ng mga porum, protestang online, pagpupulong at iba pang porma ng mga aktibidad bilang paggunita sa panahon ng batas militar.

[In the face of the rapidly changing political and economic situation in the Philippines, as well as around the world, the newspaper Ang Bayan publishes daily news and analysis on key issues facing the proletariat and the Filipino people, as well as the oppressed people among others. t other corners of the world. Here you will find the latest news and articles of Ang Bayan.]


CPP/Publication: Tilamsik | June 2021

Regional propaganda publication posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 27, 2021): Tilamsik | June 2021



SEPTEMBER 27, 2021

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Pilipino: PDF


CPP/NDF-Liberation: What (else) can we expect in the 2022 elections?

Propaganda article from the National Democratic Front publication Liberation posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 28, 2021): What (else) can we expect in the 2022 elections?


SEPTEMBER 28, 2021

Download here: PDF

Just like how Christmas carols would start playing in the Philippines as soon as the “ber”-months begin, signs also abound everywhere when the national elections is coming.

Among others:
  • Electioneering gets more blatant, for example, multiple ads for “Run, _A_A, Run”; mushrooming “troll farms” in business to hoodwink public opinion;
  • The national budget gets bigger (Php 5 trillion proposed for 2022) and loaded with more pork and hotly disputed insertions;
  • Rivalries of politicians get louder and sharper, threatening and/or causing realignments and/or shattered “alliances” among and between factions of the ruling elite; and
  • The current president cooking up ways to save himself by holding on to power, including a possible run for vice-presidency;
Anyone can see that as the scheduled national elections approaches, the lame duck president Rodrigo Duterte has consistently shown his intention to maintain or grab power. Among others, “His overriding concern is to prevent the election of a new president that would allow his arrest and trial by the International Trial Court (ICC) for the grave human rights violations that he has committed,” said Jose Maria Sison, chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NFP) peace panel.

Duterte is aping his idol, the deposed dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who executed a power grab through martial law and charter change. The latter mode is now blatantly being pushed by Duterte’s minions in Congress. Toward declaring martial law, Duterte plans to carry out false-flag operations to scapegoat the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and New People’s Army (NPA) and order mass arrest and mass murder of critics, oppositionists, and activists, said Sison, based on information shared by sources close to the national security cluster of the Duterte cabinet. He added that under Martial Law conditions or not, “Duterte also keeps in reserve the option of holding and rigging the 2022 elections to install a stooge as president and himself as vice-president.”


The carnival of Ph elections

Like a parody of Christmas, the Philippine elections also feature lots of jingles, posters, and messianic promises from candidates. For the festive atmosphere and hopeful promises the elections generate, it is highly anticipated. As such it is historically in campaigns for elections that reactionary candidates outdo each other promising populist oaths, singing and dancing, and engaging in dazzling gimmicks, and taking advantage of the culture of feudal patronage.

But in a neocolonial and semifeudal Philippine society, it has historically functioned more as a contest dishing out illusions of democracy by misrepresenting people’s interests. Here the contestants exclusively come from different factions of the ruling elite.

Elections in the Philippines is a venue for the ruling elite to settle peacefully their rivalries for political dominance and their share of spoils from a bankrupt economy.

To win, they must come out as the most “popular” enough to get the votes. Or, they must at least make it seem credible that they supposedly got the votes.

The coming 2022 elections is a continuation of that thread. But because the semifeudal, semicolonial crisis has gotten worse over time, even the illusions of democracy the election is supposed to generate are being torn and exposed by the contestants themselves. Engaged in a fierce conflict for the topmost posts, they make mistakes and fail to cover up their epic failures in meeting the demands and needs of the masses. Unable to placate the masses, they resort to deception (e.g., disinformation) and terror to quell people’s protests and opposition. Meanwhile, the fierce rivalry between competing factions hastens to expose each others’ corruption and wrongdoings.

The few candidates, who genuinely had programs for the people, certainly cut into the interests of landlords, compradors, and their imperialist masters and had to put up with being maneuvered out of their positions and popularity.

It had been so since the time six representatives of the Left-led Democratic Alliance in 1949 blocked the Bell Trade Act (a law granting parity rights to US capitalists to exploit and plunder Philippine resources). The said reps were charged with “electoral terrorism” and ousted from their posts.

Fast forward to present, the progressive partylist groups, other patriotic candidates, and even local politicians exhibiting sincere attitude toward the masses were targeted by each reactionary regime, especially during the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and the Duterte regimes. Party list groups have also been used by the reactionaries as another venue to perpetuate their dynasties and misrepresent the poor majority.

Elections and dynasties

Every election, political dynasties come out in full force to fight for government positions. The same families exchange seats in government every election and bring up more members to higher posts. Despite the many times the voters expressed disgust at these dynas0ties and voted for those who promised to eradicate them, the political dynasties remain untouched.

Political dynasties were the logical offshoots of bureaucrat capitalism. Dynastic bureaucrat capitalists served as agents of local oligarchs and big bourgeois compradors. They aggrandized themselves by using their positions to corner the biggest loot and bribes and cuts from government contracts. They used their political capital to promote their family businesses or those of their relatives, friends, and allies as well as to gain favors from contractors, loan agencies, and foreign capitalists and banks.

The dominance of political dynasties in the electoral landscape showed how rotten the ruling political and economic system in the Philippines is. “It clearly reflects how those in power, big landlords, big bourgeois compradors and bureaucrat capitalists, perpetuate their dynasties through corruption, nepotism, and patronage,” said the CPP in a statement after Duterte’s SONA in 2020. Duterte continued to evade the calls to pass an Anti-Dynasty Bill. For years, the bill languished at the committee level in Congress.

Indeed, Duterte will not outlaw the political dynasties as he is the leader of his family’s dynasty. Although Duterte has allied with the Marcoses and the Arroyos, he has definitely advanced his dynasty. Duterte’s major streams of bureaucrat capitalist accumulation included his bogus war on drugs (which he used to eliminate or subdue rival drug syndicates); the emergency powers invoked for the Covid-19 pandemic which allowed him nearly P3 trillion of public funds spent without transparency and accounting; and, the billions of pesos in “intelligence” and “confidential” funds at his behest. These are on top of the usual bureaucrat capitalist loot from his position as president. He has accumulated wealth from bribes (secretly stashed in accounts of his cronies and reportedly in Chinese banks) using the national budget to consolidate his supermajority control of Congress.


From 3Gs to 5Gs?

Guns, goons, and gold or the 3Gs have always been decisive factors in the outcome of reactionary elections in the Philippines. Politicians were known to maintain private armed groups who, aside from keeping their bosses safe from rival private armies, were also used to terrorize rivals and voters.

In his Philstar column dated July 2, 2021, Jarius Bondoc wrote that there are almost 4,000 private armies and more than a million loose firearms scattered all over the country. “The number of loose firearms could have risen to 2.1 million in 2020, International Alert-Philippines monitored,” he noted. These included assault rifles, machine pistols, and high-caliber handguns.

For his part, Duterte used “the military and police to intimidate, silence, and undermine support for his rivals and critics. Before and during the campaign, his clique has successively perpetrated the killing of numerous rival politicians. He openly used the courts, agencies, and local governments to brand progressive candidates and parties as “terrorists” in line with the “whole-of-nation” approach against “insurgency.” He spent billions of pesos of people’s money to flood the media with pro-administration lies and drown the voices of the opposition,” the CPP said after the results of the 2019 elections came out.


Money talks in the Philippines elections. Thus, the political dynasties with the deepest war chest from present and previous loots win.

Duterte’s 2016 presidential bid was backed by his now favoured oligarchs—the Floirendos and the Alcantaras of Davao, and Dennis Uy, among others. Based on his statement of contributions and expenditures (SOCE) submitted to the Commission on Elections (Comelec), Duterte spent more than Php 371 million.

Based on the record of expenditures, the 12 senatorial winners in the 2016 elections spent an average of Php 107 million.


The expenses reported through the SOCE do not include money spent for campaigning earlier than the prescribed period by the COMELEC. The Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) bared then senatorial candidate Bong Go spent more than Php 422 million for TV airtime alone from January 2018 to January 2019. During the same period, Imee Marcos spent a total of P413 million on ads.

Now, with advances in technology, one can say the 3Gs have “upgraded” to add vicious (troll) “games” and (electronic) “glitches” too. The explosion of “new media” and internet usage provided additional platforms for political dynasties to unleash their gimmickry and manufacture an image that voters ideally want to support.

In the past, it was buying out the media and using guns and goons to silence the rivals and the masses. Now, there are troll farms, artificial intelligence, and big data analysis that cater to people’s wishes. The current regime can now paralyze and attack websites and vilify and red-tag those who belie their claims.

Nowadays, they turn the same problems of the Filipino masses into something like computer games with predictable heroes and anti-heroes. They present the candidates as the “heroes” spouting what the masses want to hear while cussing out or abusing their rivals and enemies. Rodrigo Duterte enjoyed such treatment from his troll farms that in the 2016 campaign, his image was severely dusted and made up. According to news reports, Duterte spent U$200,000 or around Php 10 million for his troll farms in the 2016 presidential elections.

“Can you imagine a president elected by trolls?” Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate asked. Bayan Muna filed a resolution in June 2021 to investigate some ranking government officials who use public funds to establish internet troll farms all over the country for the 2022 elections. He warned that the next president could get elected through these troll farms by spreading misinformation, fake news, and outright lies on social media.




Starting in 2010, the Philippine elections’ vote-reading and vote-counting began to be automated. The country’s “automated” poll system was every IT experts’ frustration as nearly every safeguard they tried to propose and incorporate into the system was removed, sabotaged, or hidden and kept out of their observation. The process of vote reading and counting has lost whatever transparency remained.

In the days of manual counting, the candidates and the voters could at least check if the names read out corresponded to what’s written on the ballots and if the votes were accurately counted and tallied. Under the automated polls, it has become a big “mystery.” The control is in the hands of a private and foreign-controlled firm, the officials of the Comelec, and the candidates with most 5Gs. Hence, the illusions of democracy the elections are supposed to distribute to the populace are torn asunder by the participating candidates themselves.

Duterte used the Comelec in the 2019 elections to “carry out massive cheating by hacking the results of the automated vote counting and tallying system. On Election Day, around 1,000 vote-counting machines malfunctioned and counting was delayed for seven hours. Voting for overseas Filipinos was also problematic. According to experts, the recent elections was the most unsuccessful so far, and the most dangerous in history.”


Foreign interference

US imperialism instituted reactionary elections in the Philippines to legitimize its continued dominance over the political, economic, and socio-cultural affairs of the country. Through the years, elections ensured the joint class dictatorship of its most avid allies—the landlords and the comprador bourgeoisie. For the US, it is historically not so much as simply interfering. The Philippine electoral process is itself a by-product of American occupation. The US “tutelage in the democratic way of life” entrenched leaders loyal to US imperialism.

It is expected that the US will, as usual, take an active stance “interfering” in the national elections. The Philippines remains the most loyal ally of the US in Asia. And the US will not slack off in lending support to its most favored puppets, in the name of “upholding the rule of law,” various paeans to “democracy” and long-time alliance, and countering “terrorism.” Recently, the US approved the sale and dispatch of war materiel to the Philippines despite protests from human rights advocates.

But US hegemony is threatened. The Philippines as the US’ neocolony is also being encroached upon by China, its biggest rival. Duterte has served both the US imperialist and China, with the US still the most decisive given the military aid and economic treaties the US has with the Philippines. But until now, Duterte could not parry accusations that China helped him win the 2016 presidential elections.

Meaningful and substantial change

Historically, reactionary elections proved to be mere exercises where the masses got the chance to choose among the factions of the ruling class will oppress and exploit them. And even this chance has, through the years, been trampled upon by the most blatant of competing factions. There used to be ballot switching; now there is automated cheating and electronic “glitches.”

The revolutionary forces firmly believe the masses can only achieve genuine change through the national democratic revolution.

All over the country, revolutionary mass organizations and organs of political power have been established. They are the masses’ expression of unity and their real source of power and strength to achieve a just and progressive society, truly representative of their interests.

As a matter of principle, the revolutionary movement does not participate in the reactionary elections. It remains active however during this time as it acquires gains for the masses and the revolution. As contradictions between the different factions of the ruling classes exacerbate, the revolutionary movement is able to broaden the reach of the national democratic revolution.

In an interview, Jose Maria Sison explained, “It is a given fact that the revolutionary forces (CPP, NPA and NDFP) are prohibited from participating in the elections staged by the ruling system. But they can clarify and disseminate to the people why it is wrong to vote for the parties and candidates that support the tyrannical, treasonous, mass murdering, plundering and swindling crimes of the Duterte regime.”


For the 2022 elections, Prof. Sison reiterated the need for all patriotic and progressive forces to unite to fight and frustrate “whatever scheme Duterte chooses to implement in order to prolong himself in power” and to end his “traitorous, tyrannical, terrorist, genocidal, plundering and mendacious” regime.###


CPP/CIO: AUKUS and nuke submarine deal form part of rising US aggressive policy in Asia-Pacific

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 28, 2021): AUKUS and nuke submarine deal form part of rising US aggressive policy in Asia-Pacific


SEPTEMBER 28, 2021

The recently forged Australia-United Kingdom-United States (AUKUS) military alliance must be denounced and opposed by the Filipino people as this forms part of the rising aggressive policy of the United States in the Asia-Pacific region. The US is bent on raising the temperature of its conflict with China.

The AUKUS is certain to turn the region into a playground of imperialist bullies. The sovereignty of countries in the region are bound to be trampled upon by the US and its allied military forces.

Under the AUKUS, the US successfully forged a $90-billion deal for building eight nuclear submarines for Australia, in a push to make Australia perform a more aggressive military role in behalf of US interests. This will surely heighten a costly arms race between the imperialist countries to the detriment of the people.

The Party denounces the Duterte regime for blindly supporting the AUKUS and the nuclear arms deal. Foreign Affairs Sec. Teodoro Locsin even made a blanket commitment to allow the Australian nuclear-capable submarines to enter the Philippines in the future with an empty assurance that they will not be carrying nuclear weapons (something that Sec. Locsin surely cannot actually validate).

The CPP denounces the docking of three Australian warships which are set to participate in the Kamandag war exercises with the US military, as well as the AFP and Japanese forces. By bringing in their military equipment and troops, the US and US-dependent subordinate military forces are turning the Philippines into a launching pad for US-led power-projection activities in the Asia-Pacific. By mounting these war exercises, US imperialism wants to draw the Philippines into its increasingly aggressive policy to protect US economic and geopolitical interests.

The Philippines must continue to assert its national sovereignty against both Chinese and US imperialist military intervention. The Filipino people must take advantage of inter-imperialist conflicts to assert Philippine sovereignty and oppose subordinating or surrendering any part of the country to either imperialist power.

The Filipino people must firmly resist the build-up of Chinese military presence in the West Philippine Sea. They must work to secure international support to defend Philippine sovereignty. They can even welcome political and military cooperation with the US on the condition that any such form of cooperation should not involve the surrender of any part of the country to be used for stockpiling weapons or as outposts of the US military or any other foreign power. Thus, they must expose and reject plans to expand the construction of US military facilities inside camps under the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) as agreed to by Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana.

The Party calls on people of the US, Australia, UK, Japan and other countries to unite and demand an end to the rising aggressive policy of the US imperialism and oppose the AUKUS and the plan to expand Australia’s nuclear submarine fleet.

The formation of the AUKUS is a result of the push of the Biden government to take a more aggressive and militarist stand against China. The US government has been goading its allies to step up efforts to strengthen their military capabilities and flex their military muscle to “contain” China. The AUKUS comes on the heels of the revival of the Quad alliance between the US, the UK, India and Japan. Upon the instigation of the US, the UK recently started to sail its aircraft carrier well beyond the bounds of Europe to establish its military presence in the South China Sea.

The US managed to bring only Australia and the United Kingdom into this military alliance, underscoring how its traditional allies, including New Zealand and Canada, as well as the European Union, do not readily support its increasingly militarist and aggressive policy towards China. Many of these countries have opted to secure their own interests and adopt a more moderate policy with regard China which happes to be their biggest trading partner.

Having ended US occupation of Afghanistan, the Biden government is seeking to provoke another major military conflict even without starting an actual war, in order to continue funneling large amounts of public funds to the military-industrial complex and allow the giant companies to continue profiting from war and threats of war. The US government is set to spend a whopping $780 billion for its military under its upcoming budget, an amount more than the combined budget of its departments of State, Justice, Education, Transportation, Health and Human Services, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The US, however, will not allow itself to be dislodged from its position as the the world’s most dominant imperialist. It has proven itself willing to go to war to secure its global hegemony and spheres of trade, investment and influence.


CPP/NDF-Eastern Visayas: NDF-EV to NTF-ELCAC: Stop “surrender” campaign vs. disaster survivors in Biliran

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 27, 2021): NDF-EV to NTF-ELCAC: Stop “surrender” campaign vs. disaster survivors in Biliran


SEPTEMBER 27, 2021

The National Democratic Front-Eastern Visayas (NDF-EV) today condemned the Duterte regime’s anti-communist task force for its continuing campaign of forcing disaster victims in Biliran to “surrender” as members of the revolutionary movement.

“We condemn the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) for the ceaseless state-sanctioned harassment, red-tagging, and witch-hunt against a militant group of disaster survivors,” the NDF-EV said.

The NDF-EV issued the statement in response to a news report aired over Aksyon Radyo DYVL last September 18 regarding a “surrender ceremony” in Biliran, participated by allegedly a hundred People Surge members. The ceremony was led by the 802nd Infantry Brigade and the provincial TF-ELCAC.

“The NTF-ELCAC and the Duterte regime publicly vilify victims of calamities because they expose the government as inept, negligent, inhumane, corrupt and fascist, which is especially magnified in times of natural disasters.”

The NDF-EV added, “Throughout the country, many organizations putting forward the people’s demands have been subjected to incessant harassment and even killed by armed state agents. As such, many ordinary civilians were forced to ‘surrender.’

“Many were also fooled into attending ‘surrender ceremonies’ veiled as relief operations, such as those conducted in Catubig, Northern Samar last January and Matuguinao, Western Samar last April.”

The NDF-EV called on all disaster survivors and the broad masses to resist and expose as farce the NTF-ELCAC and the Duterte regime’s “surrender” campaign. “They must continue organizing and fighting for their democratic interests,” the NDF-EV ended.