Thursday, August 3, 2023

1-day manhunt ops net Bicol’s 14 most wanted persons

From the Philippine News Agency (Aug 3, 2023): 1-day manhunt ops net Bicol’s 14 most wanted persons (By Connie Calipay)

Camp Simeon Ola, the headquarters of Police Regional Office-5, in Legazpi City. (PNA file photo)

LEGAZPI CITY – At least 14 most wanted persons were rounded up by the Police Regional Office in Bicol (PRO-5) in several manhunt operations on Wednesday.

Lt. Col. Malu Calubaquib, PRO-5 spokesperson, on Thursday said the police operations captured two most wanted persons at the regional level, four at the provincial level, and eight others on the municipal and city levels.

The arrested individuals who are wanted on the regional level are Benjamin Esmabe Jr., of San Lorenzo Ruiz, Camarines Norte and tagged as 8th most wanted for three counts of rape with no bail recommended and
Abel Altarejos, 39, second most wanted in the region for murder.

Calubaquib also said Altarejos is also believed to be a member of the New People’s Army under Platoon 2, Larangan1, Komite ng Probinsya 4.

For the provincial most wanted, police operatives nabbed Tomas Abunda, who is wanted in Mastabe for rape.

In the province of Camarines Sur, policemen arrested Antonio Bobis, 41, fourth most wanted, from Zone 4, Barangay San Antonio, Tigaon, Camarines Sur. He was indicted for acts of lasciviousness with recommended bail of PHP200,000 and in another case for four counts of rape.

The province’s seventh most wanted, Alfredo Astor Jr., who is facing four counts of rape, also fell during the police operation.

Last is Ian Asay, 21, of Pili town, who was changed for four counts of rape.

Eight other wanted persons charged with different crimes at the municipal and city levels were also arrested.

Calubaquib said the arrest of the fugitives truly demonstrates the strong resolve of the unit to not only provide justice to the victims but to also promote the overall peace in the region.

NPA rebel surrenders in Masbate

From the Philippine News Agency (Aug 3, 2023): NPA rebel surrenders in Masbate (By Connie Calipay)

LEGAZPI CITY – A member of the New People's Army (NPA) surrendered to police in Mandaon, Masbate province, the Police Regional Office in Bicol (PRO5) said on Thursday.

In a report, Lt. Col. Malu Calubaquib, PRO5 spokesperson, identified the surrenderer as "Ka Kirat", 58, from the village of Maolingan in Mandaon town.

"He surrendered to our troops Wednesday. He was formerly under the command of "Ka Jaypee" and is affiliated with Platoon 1, Larangan 1, Komiteng Probinsya 4-Masbate, Bicol Regional Party Committee (BRPC)," she said.

"Ka Kirat" turned over a caliber .38 revolver without a serial number, along with five rounds of live ammunition. Both the NPA member and the turned-over firearm are in the custody of the Mandaon Municipal Police Station (MPS).

Calubaquib said the surrender was facilitated by the joint personnel from Mandaon MPS and 1st Provincial Mobile Force Compan, Masbate Provincial Police Office (PPO).

PRO5 is committed to assist those who choose to lay down their arms and contribute to peace and development in the region under its Enhanced-Comprehensive Local Integration Program.

Southern Philippines peace in progress as thousands of combatants turn in arms

Posted to Arab News (Aug 3, 2023): Southern Philippines peace in progress as thousands of combatants turn in arms  (By ELLIE ABEN)

Former MILF fighters attend a ceremony of their decommissioning in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao province on Aug. 3, 2023. (Bangsamoro Information Office)

More than 26,000 former separatists have so far been decommissioned Peace agreement also on top of agenda for Marcos’ administration

MANILA: Over 1,000 Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters were decommissioned on Thursday in a major step in the implementation of a peace agreement between the Philippine government and the country’s restive Muslim south, which had for decades sought independence from Manila.

Bangsamoro, a region covering predominantly Muslim areas of Mindanao, has been undergoing a peace process that began in 2014 when the government struck a permanent cease-fire deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front after almost four decades of conflict.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front is an armed breakaway group of the Moro National Liberation Front — the oldest Muslim separatist movement in Mindanao — which continued to fight when its parent organization reached a peace agreement with Manila in the 1990s. Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters only agreed to turn over their firearms in 2014, in exchange for self-rule in Bangsamoro.

The 2014 peace deal includes a target of decommissioning 40,000  Moro Islamic Liberation Frontcombatants, a process that also involves turning in and putting weapons beyond use.

As 1,301 more fighters joined the fold on Thursday, they bring the total number of decommissioned fighters to over 26,000, or more than 65 percent of the target, the autonomous Muslim region BARMM said.

“This occasion signals the success of the peace process in the Southern Philippines … The Moro Islamic Liberation Front recognizes that the decommissioning process is a significant component of the normalization track under the comprehensive agreement on the Bangsamoro,” BARMM Chief Minister Ahod “Al-Hajj Murad” Ebrahim said during a ceremony on Thursday.

“For some, the process of decommissioning might be slow, but may I remind you all that this process takes some time because we are not only transforming the individual lives of combatants and making them productive members of our society, (but just as) importantly, transforming all communities across the BARMM to become peaceful and progressive.”

In his State of the Nation Address last month, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. gave a nod to the Bangsamoro peace process and said he was “proud of the progress that BARMM has taken.”

The Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity Carlito Galvez Jr. earlier said that it was “very critical that we build on the peace gains and ensure continuing progress.”

The peace agreement is also “on top of the Marcos’ administration” agenda, he said.

BARMM Chief Minister Ebrahim is looking forward to finishing the entire decommissioning process, he told Arab News, as it will officially conclude the peace deal.

“Once the commitment is fully complied with, then we will have the signing of an exit agreement,” Ebrahim said.

BARMM is now urging Manila to speed up other aspects of the decommissioning process, including the development of infrastructure in the region.

“We call upon the national government to expedite the other components of the normalization because many have yet to be fulfilled or started,” Ebrahim said.

“Because the real challenge is the lack of funds for normalization. So, we’re asking that it will be hastened.”

As part of the peace process, Bangsamoro residents voted for its greater autonomy in a referendum held in 2019. The transition period will culminate in 2025 when the region will elect its legislature and executive.

Ex-Moro Islamic Liberation Front combatants turned farmers get inputs, equipment

From the Sun Star-Zamboanga (Aug 3, 2023): Ex-Moro Islamic Liberation Front combatants turned farmers get inputs, equipment

ZAMBOANGA. The Ministry of Agrculture, Fisheries, and Agrarian Reform in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (MAFAR-Barmm) distribute agricultural inputs and equipment to support the cooperatives of former Moro Islamic Liberation Front combatants turned farmers. The initiative is aligned with the 12-Point Priority Agenda of Barmm Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim to promote socio-economic development and enhancing production in the agri-fishery sector. (SunStar Zamboanga)

THE Ministry of Agrculture, Fisheries, and Agrarian Reform in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (MAFAR-Barmm) has distributed agricultural inputs and equipment to support the cooperatives of former combatants turned farmers.

The recipients of the farm inputs and equipment were former Moro Islamic Liberation Front  combatants who have transition into farming as means of livelihood.

The MAFAR-Barmm said in a statement Wednesday, August 3, that the distribution of agricultural inputs and farm machinery aimed to streamline farming operations, increase productivity, lower labor costs, and promote sustainable and efficient agricultural practices.

MAFAR-Barmm said the Wal Farmers Association (WFA) from Maguindanao received a range of farm machinery, including two units of Rice Reaper, one unit of Rice Combine Harvester, two units of Rice Thresher, one unit of Rice Transplanter, a Corn Mill, and three rolls of Hog wire.

The WFA also received 80 bags of Hybrid Palay seeds, 80 bags of Inbred Palay seeds, 80 bags of Hybrid Corn seeds, 219 bags of Urea Fertilizer, 121 bags of Complete Fertilizer, 122 packs of Foliar Fertilizer, 702 Coffee Robusta seedlings, and 250 of each Grafted Jackfruit, Grafted Lanzones, Grafted Rambutan, Grafted Durian, Grafted Marang, and Grafted Calamansi.

Similarly, the Salam Laguitan Agriculture Cooperative (SLAC) received two units of Hand Tractors, one unit of Rice Reaper, a unit of Rice Combine Harvester, a unit of Corn Combine Harvester, a Rice Thresher, two units of Rice Transplanter, one unit of Corn Mill, one Refrigerated Van, and a Dropside Truck.

In addition, the SLAC cooperative also received agricultural-inputs, including 110 bags of Inbred Palay Seeds, 143 bags of Hybrid Corn seeds, 385 bags of Urea Fertilizer, 160 bags of Complete Fertilizer, 160 packs of Foliar Fertilizer, five rolls of Hog Wire, five rolls of Barbed Wire, and five Knapsack Sprayers.

Alladin Badio, SLAC coop chairperson, expressed heartfelt gratitude to the Barmm government and MAFAR-Special Development Fund (SDF) for providing agricultural inputs and farm machinery that would aid them in maintaining their livelihoods as former MILF combatants turned farmers.

“This assistance will ease the burden of farming and enable us to achieve higher yields and improve the quality of our products," Badio said.

He added that utilizing modern farm machinery will expedite the farmers’ work, allowing them to fully utilize the aid provided by Barmm.

The provision of various fruit seedlings enables farmers to diversify their crops and cultivate different types of fruits in their farmlands.

MAFAR-Barmm said the initiatives are aligned with the 12-Point Priority Agenda of Barmm Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim, focusing on promoting socio-economic development and enhancing production in the agri-fishery sector. (SunStar Zamboanga)

Bangsamoro’s 7th most wanted person nabbed

From Sun Star-Manila (Aug 3, 2023): Bangsamoro’s 7th most wanted person nabbed (By THIRD ANNE PERALTA-MALONZO)

Photo from Anti-Kidnapping Group

AUTHORITIES have arrested a “notorious kidnapper” allegedly involved in a series of high-profile kidnappings in Lanao del Norte. 

In a statement on Thursday, August 3, Philippine National Police (PNP) Anti-Kidnapping Group director Brigadier General Rodolfo Castil Jr. said the suspect, Fahad Makil Lumiguis, also known as Fahad Lumiguis Alangca/Abdul Raffy/Alu, 33, was nabbed on Tuesday, August 1, in Barangay Basagad, Balo-i, Lanao del Norte. 

Lumiguis has standing arrest warrants issued by courts in Tagum City, Davao del Norte and Iligan City, Lanao del Norte for charges of kidnapping with no bail recommended. 

He has also been listed as the sixth most wanted person (MWP) in the municipal level and the seventh MWP in Bangsamoro region. 

Recovered from the arrested suspect were one piece of Colt .45 caliber M1911 pistol with five pieces of ammunition and one piece of steel magazine of .45 caliber. 

Aside from kidnapping incidents, Lumiguis was also alleged to be involved in various criminal and illegal drug activities in Balo-i town and other parts of Lanao del Sur. 

He was being tagged as the primary suspect in a shooting incident in Upper Payawan, Barangay Sarip Alawi, Balo-i, Lanao del Norte in August 17, 2019 and was involved in the kidnapping of a certain "Amil" in Tagum City, Davao del Norte in October 2022. 

He was also allegedly involved in a carnapping incident in Balo-i, Lanao del Norte on June 12, 2023. 

Police said the suspect is also providing financial support to the Daulah Islamiyah-Maute Group. 

Lumiguis was brought to AKG Mindanao Field Unit, Iligan Satellite Office for documentation and will be brought to Iligan City Police Station 4, Iligan City Police Office for temporary detention pending the return of the warrant of arrest to the issuing court and for inquest proceedings. 

“I assure the public that we will continue our unwavering efforts to maintain peace and order, ensuring the safety of all citizens. This operation serves as a stern warning to other criminals that law enforcement agencies will not rest until justice is served,” Castil said. 

The police official said more details regarding the arrest and the suspect's criminal activities may be revealed in the course of the investigation. (SunStar Philippines)

Hontiveros says adopted Senate resolution on WPS not ‘watered down’ version

From Rappler (Aug 2, 2023): Hontiveros says adopted Senate resolution on WPS not ‘watered down’ version (By BONZ MAGSAMBOL)

Opposition Senator Risa Hontiveros is grateful to her colleagues for reaching a consensus on condemning China's harassment of Filipino fishermen

MANILA, Philippines – Opposition Senator Risa Hontiveros on Wednesday, August 2, said that the adopted Senate resolution “strongly condemning” China’s incessant incursions in the West Philippine Sea (WPS) was not a “watered down” version of her original resolution.

“‘Yung intent ng unang reso ko at intent ng reso ni SP (Senate President), ay kinombine lang at ganun pa rin kalakas at makikita natin sa reception din ng publiko or at least as we’re starting to measure it sa pamamagitan ng pag-cover niyo sa devlopment na ito,” Hontiveros said when asked if she agrees with Senate President Migz Zubiri that the revised resolution was not an adulterated reworking.

(The intent of my initial resolution and the resolution of SP was combined, and it’s still strong and we can see the reception of the public or at least we’re starting to measure it the way you cover this development.)

On Tuesday, August 1, the Senate unanimously approved Resolution No. 718, which was a merged version of Resolutions No. 659 and 707 filed by Hontiveros and Zubiri, respectively.

In this new resolution, senators did not call on the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to bring China’s harassment before the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) as originally proposed by Hontiveros. Instead, they included the UNGA option only among five proposed moves in case China continues harassing Filipinos in the West Philippine Sea.

Resolution No. 718 came after senators held a closed-door meeting on Monday, July 31, and after Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, who once served as DFA chief under then-president Rodrigo Duterte, expressed reservations about bringing the issue before the UNGA.

Some senators, including Cayetano, last week moved to put on hold the approval of Senate Resolution 659. They believed that bringing the issue before the UN might trigger tensions between the two countries, prompting the Senate to hold an executive session with security officials.

Despite revising her original resolution, Hontiveros said that she was grateful to her colleagues for reaching a consensus on condemning China’s harassment of Filipino fishermen.

“So ngayon na-adopt namin ‘yung aming resolution unanimously, ita-transmit sa DFA, the ball is in their court now, kasi sila yung alter-ego ni Presidente bilang architect of foreign policy. Kung alinmang hakbang ang pipiliin nila pati, timetable ilang buwan pa ba ‘yan ilang taon pa ba ‘yan nasa sakanilang kamay na. At least the Senate has spoken and in line with the thinking and the feeling ng ating mga kababayan,” she said.

(Now that we have adopted the resolution unanimously, to be transmitted to the DFA, the ball is in their court now, because they are the alter-ego of the President as architect of the foreign policy. Whatever action they choose, and timetable – whether months or years, it’s now in their hands. At least the Senate has spoken and in line with the thinking and the feelings of our fellowmen.)

The Senator said that what she appreciated about the DFA was that it had no contentions on the Senate move.

“There was that openness of mind na naappreciate ko at ‘yung paghawak nila ng responsibilidad na sila nga ang gagawa niyan, which I respect, at nandoon na sa unang reso ko at definitely sa reso ni SP and sa final reso ng Senado,” she said.

(There was that openness of mind that I appreciate and the way they take responsibility that they will be the one to implement, which I respect, the actions included in my resolution, SP’s resolution, and in the final Senate resolution.)

Speaking to reporters in Malaysia on Thursday, July 27, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. seemingly downplayed Hontiveros’ resolution, saying that it’s the executive that sets foreign policy.

“So, I mean – of course, the senator (Risa Hontiveros) is free to file whatever resolution she wants. But I do not know how that will translate to any action that will reach the United Nations General Assembly,” said Marcos.

Reacting to the President’s pronouncement, Hontiveros took a swipe at him, saying that he seemed to forget the role of the legislation.

“Naku naging senador din naman si Presidente noon. Baka nakaligtaan lang nila or baka nalito lang sila sa reso ng senado at ‘yung inuudyok namin na reso ng gobyerno sa pamamagitan ng DFA sa UN General Assembly among many other possible more assertive actions,” she said.

(The President was a senator before. Maybe he forgot or was confused with what a Senate resolution is and our resolution urging the government through the DFA to bring the issue before the UN General Assembly, among many other possible more assertive actions.)

Romualdez: Consensus on military pension reform reached, funding source found

From Rappler (Aug 2, 2023): Romualdez: Consensus on military pension reform reached, funding source found (By DWIGHT DE LEON)

'Our soldiers and uniformed personnel are now assured: their pension plan are now fully funded. Not only in 2023 or 2024, but in years to come,' says Speaker Martin Romualdez, without specifying what the funding source will be

MANILA, Philippines – Congressional leaders and members of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s economic team broke the impasse on the ambitious push to reform the pension system of military and uniformed personnel (MUP), Speaker Martin Romualdez said on Wednesday, August 2.

In a statement, Romualdez said the consensus on how to fund the reforms was reached following a three-hour meeting, but he did not specify the funding source.

“Our soldiers and uniformed personnel are now assured: their pension plan are now fully funded. Not only in 2023 or 2024, but in years to come,” Romualdez said.

House ways and means panel chairperson Joey Salceda will chair an ad hoc committee to finalize other details of the reforms.

Western Visayas keeps a surprising stronghold over the Palarong Pambansa 2023 medal tally lead, putting NCR's decades-long reign in possible jeopardy as the annual event nears its end

“It guarantees three things: sure salary increase, sure indexation of pensions, and sure funding for the pension system,” Salceda, who the Speaker’s office said “offered the win-win formula,” said in a separate statement.
Why is there a need for reform?

The current MUP pension system – which has been described by Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno as the “most generous” in the world – is simply unsustainable, and is at risk of fiscal collapse.

The national government fully funds the pensions of MUPs, and uniformed personnel on active duty do not contribute to the fund.

A retired personnel’s monthly pension is automatically “indexed” to the salary of a person of the same rank. This means that when an active personnel’s salary gets a raise, the retired officer’s pension rises as well.

MUPs are those who belong to the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Bureau of Fire Protection, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Philippine Coast Guard, the Philippine Public Safety College, the Bureau of Corrections, and the Philippine National Police.

Military pension spending in 2022 reached P164 billion, already outpacing maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) and capital outlays.

But the military has serious apprehensions towards past and even current proposals, and the government risks the possibility of a mass early retirement among MUPs should they find the reform disadvantageous to them.


Marcos has made pension reform a priority, and is “willing to spend his political capital” to make it happen, according to Diokno.

Abalos says gov’t to turn 400 former Moro rebels into cops before 2024

From Rappler (Aug 3, 2023): Abalos says gov’t to turn 400 former Moro rebels into cops before 2024 (By ROMMEL REBOLLIDO)

The National Police Commission says the recruitment aligns with the peace agreement and a provision in the Bangsamoro Organic Law

GENERAL SANTOS, Philippines – Hundreds of former Mindanao secessionist rebels will be joining the Philippine National Police (PNP) by the end of this year, Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos said during the 15th meeting of the Inter-Governmental Relations Body (IGRB) in Pasay City.

Abalos announced the ongoing recruitment from the ranks of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Moro National Liberation Front, with a commitment to recruit at least 400 before 2024.

He announced this on July 27 while discussing matters of cooperation and issue resolution with officials, including those from the 
Moro Islamic Liberation Front  -led Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

RESOLVING ISSUES. Members of the Intergovernmental Relations Body (IGRB) discuss vital matters of cooperation and to resolve issues. photo courtesy of OPAPRU

Commissioner Alberto Bernardo of the National Police Commission (Napolcom) said the recruitment from the ranks of Moro Islamic Liberation Front  and MNLF aligns with the peace agreement and a provision in the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL).

Based on the law, the commission can waive the age, height, and educational requirements for former guerrillas who wish to become policemen, subject to other existing policies and regulations.

Recruits who are accepted into the police force but lack the required educational attainment will be given 15 years to comply.

Their ranks and salary grades will be determined based on existing laws, rules, and regulations in the PNP.

BARMM Education Minister Mohagher Iqbal, the IGRB co-chair, lauded the ongoing recruitment process, as it provides an opportunity for many former rebels, especially those who missed going to school due to their involvement in the secessionist movement, to join the PNP.

The recruitment process began with Napolcom conducting a special qualifying eligibility examination on May 19, 2022, specifically for Moro Islamic Liberation Front and MNLF members who wished to join the PNP.

The examinations took place simultaneously in various schools in Cotabato City and Lamitan City, Basilan, and those who passed are now being considered for recruitment.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front, UBJP leaders promise to keep off barangay, SK elections

From Rappler (Aug 3, 2023): Moro Islamic Liberation Front, UBJP leaders promise to keep off barangay, SK elections (By FERDINANDH CABRERA)

'We cannot stop anyone from participating in this political exercise, but we will not openly support them as a group,' says Maguindanao del Norte Governor Abdulraof Macacua

COTABATO CITY, Philippines – The Moro Islamic Liberation Front on Tuesday, August 1, said it would keep off the upcoming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections, and respect the non-partisan nature of the village-based political exercises.

Maguindanao del Norte Governor Abdulraof “Sammy Gambar” Macacua, the secretary-general of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front ’s political wing, the United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP), said that they would not endorse or nominate any of their members for the elections.

Bangsamoro Chief Minister Ahod “Murad” Ebrahim, the leader of both the Moro Islamic Liberation Front  and UBJP, said they would actively participate in the 2025 regional and national elections, but would keep their distance from the barangay and youth elections this year.

“We will not officially participate as a party, but those who wish to participate may do so in their personal capacity,” Ebrahim said.

On paper, the barangay and SK elections are intended to be non-partisan, with candidates running for positions in the villages not being affiliated with political parties. The intention is to encourage community representation and avoid the influence of national and local politicians in the grassroots.

Macacua said the UBJP would not issue certificates of nomination, during a gathering at Cotabato City Mall. The event was organized by the provincial government in collaboration with the military, police, Commission on Elections (COMELEC), and local governments.

“We cannot stop anyone from participating in this political exercise, but we will not openly support them as a group. We want the barangay and SK elections to be non-partisan,” he said.

BARMM Interior Minister Naguib Sinarimbo urged the local chief executives and other politicians in the region to follow the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and UBJP’s lead and maintain a non-partisan stance in the upcoming barangay and SK elections.

“Let us not interfere and allow people in the communities to choose their leaders without political intervention,” Sinarimbo said.

However, several mayors, who requested anonymity, told Rappler during the gathering that it would be challenging for them not to support candidates in the October elections, as they see them as political allies who helped them in winning the 2022 mayoral race and in their previous campaigns.

Rebels insist arrested rape suspect not a comrade

From the Visayan Daily Star (Aug 4, 2023): Rebels insist arrested rape suspect not a comrade (By GILBERT P. BAYORAN)

The Mt. Cansermon Command New People’s Army South Central Negros Guerilla Front has issued a statement strongly denying military and police claims that an arrested rape suspect, who is a senior citizen, is not a commander of a rebel Yunit Militia Unit.

In a statement, rebel spokesperson Ka Dionesio Magbuelas claimed that Lodorico But-ay, 68, is a just an ordinary farmer, contrary to claims of the Philippine Army and PNP.

But-ay, alias Jude, who was tagged by the police and military as the commanding officer of the NPA Yunit Militia, was apprehended on July 28 during a during a Joint Enhanced Military and Police Operation (JEMPO) of the police and military, in Sitio Cunalom, Brgy. Carabalan, Himamaylan City, by virtue of an arrest warrant issued by Judge Walter Zorilla.

According to the 94th Infantry Battalion, But-ay was denied bail by Judge Zorilla, the presiding judge of Himamaylan Regional Trial Curt Branch 55, due to being charged with rape.

Magbuelas claimed that But-ay, an Indigenous People (IP) is a member of the Farmers Association of Brgy. Carabalan (FABCA), and has no connection with the NPA.

DND chief wants development of EDCA sites expedited

Posted to the Mindanao Examiner (Aug 3, 2023): DND chief wants development of EDCA sites expedited

DEPARTMENT OF National Defense (DND) Secretary Gilberto Teodoro Jr. said on Thursday there is a need to expedite development of all existing locations identified as Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) sites with the United States.

The DND chief saw first-hand the "operational limitations" caused by refueling Philippine and American aircraft engaged in disaster relief missions after the onslaught of the southwest monsoon and Typhoon Egay, using the barrel method, during a visit to the EDCA site in Lal-lo Airfield in Cagayan Thursday.

"Ngayon kung makikita niyo ang (now you are seeing the) operational limitation, nila ay nakikita nyo dyan ay barrels pa ang pagkarga ng fuel (caused by using barrels for refueling) for both Philippine assets and the United States air assets," Teodoro told a media interview.

In the case of Lal-lo Airfield, developing or building more facilities further allow the increase in "operational tempo," he added.

Teodoro said there is a need to expedite the development of five initial EDCA sites and the additional four –the Naval Base Camilo Osias in Sta. Ana, Cagayan; Lal-lo Airport in Lal-lo Cagayan; Camp Melchor Dela Cruz in Gamu, Isabela; and Balabac Island in Palawan.

The five initial EDCA sites are the Cesar Basa Air Base in Floridablanca, Pampanga; Fort Magsaysay Military Reservation in Nueva Ecija; Lumbia Airport in Cagayan De Oro; Antonio Bautista Air Base in Puerto Princesa, Palawan; and Benito Ebuen Air Base in Cebu.

Teodoro said he saw “the need to speed up the development of these Philippine bases in order to serve a total national security picture of our country and in the other four sites.”

"These are (located in) most disaster-prone areas actually where the four more EDCA sites are and they are also essential to the integrity of our credible deterrent posture and Philippine territorial security," he added.

He thanked the US for coming to the Philippines' assistance shortly after these weather disturbances which hit the country hard last week.

"We like to thank our United States partners for coming into our assistance because our air assets are totally committed not only here in Northern Luzon, in Central Luzon and in Mindanao also," he added.

He reiterated that facilities that will be set in EDCA sites are for "purely logistical" purposes.

"The EDCA is purely a logistical site of the United States to help us speed up operational tempo and response, these are non-offensive," Teodoro said.

He, however, clarified that Filipino assets that will be deployed or positioned in EDCA sites "are Philippine national security items for our territorial defense". ( Priam Nepomuceno)

158 ex-rebels complete 6-month reintegration program

Posted to the Mindanao Examiner (Aug 3, 2023): 158 ex-rebels complete 6-month reintegration program

AT LEAST 158 former rebels in Northern Samar have completed the reintegration program inside a residential facility built by the provincial government.

Since its opening in 2019, the facility has been helping former rebels rebuild their lives shattered by years of armed rebellion, said Northern Samar provincial information officer John Allen Berbon.

“Former rebels, which we call now peacebuilders undergo social healing, reconciliation, and spiritual enhancement sessions at the Balay Darangpan (shelter) for five to six months to prepare them for reintegration back to the mainstream community,” said Berbon on a phone interview Thursday.

Of the number assisted, 131 of them entered the facility in 2022 while others enrolled this year.

The Balay Darangpan halfway house is inside the provincial social welfare and development office compound in Catarman, Northern Samar.(Sarwell Meniano)

Before admission, the peacebuilders attended an orientation on the center's rules and regulations and were introduced to the peace-related policies and programs of the provincial government and its partner agencies under the provincial task force to end the local communist armed conflict (PTF-ELCAC) and the provincial task force balik loob (PTF-BL), which adopts the whole of nation approach to peace and development.

“The continuous operation of Balay Darangpan stands as a testament to the support of the provincial Government, the PTF-BL, PTF-ELCAC chaired by Governor Edwin Ongchuan, in cooperation with other stakeholders, in ending local insurgency in the province,” Berbon added.

Northern Samar is the most insurgency-affected province in Eastern Visayas, where two active NPA guerilla fronts operate.

The military said although front committees 1 and 15 are still active, they do not control any village in Northern Samar.

Front Committee 2, which used to operate on the boundary of Samar and Northern Samar, has been dismantled this year after the capture and surrender of some of its combatants and the recovery of several firearms.

The NPA front committee 3, which operates near the boundaries of Northern Samar and Eastern Samar provinces, has also been weakened after the series of operations by government forces.

The Philippine Army targets to wipe out insurgency in Northern Samar before the year ends. (Sarwell Meniano)

CPP: Struggle amid rising prices and falling standard of living

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 3, 2023): Struggle amid rising prices and falling standard of living

The Marcos regime must be held directly responsible for the rapid fall in the standard of living of the toiling masses of the Filipino people. The quality of life of majority of the people is fast deteriorating. This follows sharp increases over the past few weeks and months in the prices of fuel products, rice, meat, vegetables and other food products, toll and transportation and other basic commodities and services.

Prices continue to rise as a direct result of the Marcos regime’s neoliberal policies. Marcos’ programs cause the destruction of productive forces and the environment, further weaken the capacity to produce food and basic commodities, aggravate the country’s over-reliance on imports, foreign loans and foreign investments, accelerate urban overpopulation and decay, and exacerbate the country’s agrarian, non-industrial and backward economy.

The Marcos regime carries out anti-people and anti-poor measures in line with policy-directions set by the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other imperialist agencies, in exchange for loans. These measures serve the interests of foreign big banks and monopoly capitalists, and trample on the basic social and economic rights of the people.

Foremost among these is the policy of wage suppression to make available an army of cheap labor to be exploited by foreign capitalists in so-called economic enclaves. These also include cutbacks on public spending for education, health and other social services. To pay the country’s debts, more onerous taxes are imposed on the broad masses of consumers, while tax exemptions and other perks are granted to foreign investors. Marcos is also vigorously pursuing import liberalization, particularly of agricultural products which over the decades have bankrupted millions of people and destroyed local production. Various other measures are being pushed to allow foreign monopoly capitalists and local big bourgeois compradors to take away the sources of income of millions of people.

There is acute joblessness with at least 20 million having no jobs or working only part-time jobs. Marcos and his officials are obscuring the true magnitude of unemployment by counting people as having a job even when they are, in fact, unemployed and merely making ends meet. Millions of peasants, fisherfolk, as well as jeepney drivers and operators, small entrepreneurs and other ordinary earners, are being economically dislocated as big local and foreign capitalists take away their livelihood. Even the intensified drive of the Marcos government to search for jobs overseas is grossly insufficient to absorb the millions of jobless workers.

The Filipino people’s standard of living continues to fall, with majority living under conditions of poverty. After having cut down expenses for less essential items, and compelled to shell out more for rising costs of housing, electricity, water, health, education, transportation and communication, people are now being forced to cut down spending even on food or quality nutrition. The Marcos government and its “economic experts” are further lowering the poverty threshold to hide the fact that millions of people are being pulled down into the quagmire of hunger and economic distress.

The situation is most grievous in the rural areas where the Marcos regime promotes policies and programs that allow big landlords, big bourgeois compradors and foreign big capitalists to take away hundreds of thousands of hectares of land for plantations and mining operations, “green” energy, ecotourism and other infrastructure projects. This is further heightened under World Bank-funded programs to make land more “marketable” and “saleable.” Hundreds of thousands of peasants and rural poor families are being dispossessed of land and other means of production and sources of livelihood, resulting in widespread rural bankruptcy and poverty.

Corruption at the highest levels of the bureaucracy has become even more brazen under the Marcos regime. Through the Maharlika Investment Fund, ₱500 billion of public funds will be funneled to Marcos’ favored big bourgeois compradors, cronies and dummies. These few millionaires and billionaires indulge in luxurious lifestyles while majority of Filipinos wallow in poverty and worsening conditions. Marcos himself controls billions of pesos of unaudited “confidential” and “intelligence” funds. He goes on publicly-funded foreign junkets and uses the Malacañang Palace to host one banquet after another.

While public spending for education, health and other social services remain lacking, hundreds of billions of pesos in public funds are being wasted on maintaining a super-bloated military and police force, whose officers and men are overcompensated to secure their loyalty, receive extra-large pensions (to which they have made no contributions), and given the leeway to spend money and earn kickbacks in purchasing US surplus and old military hardware under the “AFP modernization” program.

The Filipino people must fight back to defend their social and economic rights and resist the further deterioration of their standard of living. They must demand lower prices of fuel, food and other basic commodities and services; wage and salary increases for workers and ordinary employees; removal of onerous taxes and unjust fees; lowering of land rent and prices of seeds and other farm input; elimination of usury; raising farm-gate prices; and overall protection and expansion of their livelihood and sources of income. The broad masses of workers, peasants, and other toiling people must press for these and other urgent democratic demands to prevent their social and economic standing from further sliding down.

They must expose and condemn Marcos for trying to fool them with token initiatives such as the ultra-hyped Kadiwa stores that he himself brags about, the grossly limited number of which could not even create a dent on market prices. There are also the so-called “food stamps” initiated by the World Bank and other “cash for work” schemes that at best cater only to a few tens of thousands of people, while ignoring the plight of tens of millions of people. These “poverty alleviation” programs merely obscure the deep-seated reasons behind the gross conditions of the people.

The Marcos regime is putting the Filipino people at the mercy of the profit hungry foreign monopoly capitalists, local big bourgeois comprador, big landlords, and bureaucrat capitalists. The increasingly intolerable socioeconomic conditions of the Filipino people lends urgency to the struggle to put an end to the semicolonial and semifeudal social system and its backward, agrarian, non-industrial economic system, which puts the broad masses in a state of perpetual crisis.

The Filipino people’s struggle to defend and fight for their social and economic rights are firmly linked to their struggle for national democracy, particularly its key economic components of genuine land reform and national industrialization. Land reform aims to end the centuries-long problem of landlessness and feudal exactions which have fettered the majority of the Filipino people to economic backwardness and oppression. National industrialization seeks to develop the country’s productive forces, maximize its natural and human resources, unleash the full potential to produce for the people’s needs and enable the country to stand on its own two feet.

The Filipino people’s aspiration to decisively end poverty and hunger, can be achieved only by waging revolutionary struggle to end the rule of US imperialism through its neocolonial state, and attain genuine freedom and democracy.

CPP/NDF-Luis Jalandoni: On the US-Marcos regime’s weaponization of the civilian bureaucracy

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 3, 2023): On the US-Marcos regime’s weaponization of the civilian bureaucracy

Luis Jalandoni 
Chief International Representative
National Democratic Front of the Philippines

August 03, 2023

The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) denounces the US-Marcos regime’s recent move to weaponize the civilian bureaucracy by appointing cabinet secretaries as Cabinet Officers for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) within the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-Elcac).

Among the BBM regime’s most notable appointees are Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin “Boying” Remulla as CORDS for Region IV-A. Remulla is a notorious red-tagger from a political dynasty in Cavite. He is also responsible for absolving police officers involved in the 2021 Bloody Sunday Massacre which resulted in the killing of nine activists and the arrest of six others in Southern Tagalog. Also appointed as CORDS for the Caraga region is National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Secretary Allen Capuyan who is infamously implementing anti-people policies to facilitate extractive projects encroaching on indigenous lands across the country. Meanwhile, Presidential Assistant for Eastern Mindanao Leo Tereso Magno was designated as CORDS for the Davao Region. Magno is the grandson of the late Leopoldo Abellera who served as justice secretary during the Marcos martial law regime.

Appointing cabinet members into key positions within the NTF-Elcac draws disturbing yet unsurprising parallels to the Marcos fascist dictatorship, wherein the civilian bureaucracy was instrumentalized to serve the interests of then ruling Marcos clique, leading to its eventual downfall.

The NDFP sees this move as a clear indication of the current regime’s failure to fulfil its promise to its US imperialist masters of “crushing the New People’s Army in two years.” In all likelihood, the US conspires with the Marcos-Duterte clique to accelerate and intensify its counterrevolutionary campaign assisted by the EDCA-sanctioned presence of US military forces in the Philippines. This also comes amid intensifying regional tensions in the West Philippine Sea and is consistent with the US policy of encircling China. All in all, this equates to a renewed drive for ‘counterinsurgency’ operations by the US-Marcos administration.

While counterinsurgency operations since martial rule have changed under each GRP president – Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s Bantay Laya, Noynoy Aquino III’s Bayanihan, and Duterte’s Kapayapaan and Kapanatagan – these strategies are tied by a common thread. These campaigns are patterned after the US counterinsurgency doctrine which adopts a ‘whole-of-nation’ approach mobilizing the entire government bureaucracy to transform civilian institutions and elements into weapons of counterrevolutionary war. However, because the reactionary government and its military have time and again failed to defeat the revolutionary movement, they have intentionally targeted activists and legitimate democratic organizations, labeling them as ‘terrorists’ and making no distinction between armed combatants and civilians.

The NDFP also takes exception of the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ baseless claims that the NPA only has one remaining active guerilla front. This contradicts the AFP’s drive to build more combat battalions in addition to more than 150 battalions of military and police forces currently deployed in counterguerrilla operations across the country, carrying out campaigns of state terrorism against the toiling masses.

Presidents of the reactionary government since the martial law era in the 1970s to today’s fraudulent BBM regime share one thing in common: each has tried, but repeatedly and miserably failed to crush the armed revolution of the Filipino people. And the reason is patently obvious: the Filipino people’s war is a just war that can never be defeated.

CPP/NPA-South Central Negros: Wala sang kaangtanan si Lodorico But-ay sa NPA

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 2, 2023): Wala sang kaangtanan si Lodorico But-ay sa NPA (Lodorico But-ay has nothing to do with the NPA)

Dionesio Magbuelas
NPA-South Central Negros (Mt. Cansermon Command)
Negros Island Regional Operational Command (Apolinario Gatmaitan Command)
New People's Army

August 02, 2023

Ginapanginwala sang Mt. Cansermon Command-New People’s Army (MCC-NPA) ang pahayag sang 94th IB kag Philippine National Police (PNP) Himamaylan City sa ila gintigayon nga Joint Enhanced Military and Police Operation (JEMPO) nga isa ka commanding officer (CO) sang yunit milisya ang ila gindakop sa Sityo Cunalom, Barangay Carabalan, Himamaylan City sadtong Hulyo 28.

Si Lodorico But-ay, 68 anyos, indi CO sang yunit milisya. Isa siya ka lunsay nga mangunguma sa amu nga sityo kag myembro sang Farmers Association of Barangay Carabalan (FABCA). Myembro man siya sang Indigenous Peoples (IPs) sa lugar kag wala ini sang malain nga rekord sa pumuluyo kag wala man ini kaangtanan sa NPA.

Malisyoso ang ginahimo sang 94th IB kag PNP nga pag-angot sa rebolusyonaryong kahublagan kay But-ay nga may kaso nga rape. Gusto sang militar kag kapulisan nga pahiran sang higko ang ngalan sang NPA paagi sa pagkriminalisa sa ila mga dinakpan. Bangud gasgas na ang ila linya nga “nakuhaan sang armas-luthang kag eksplosibo,” subong kon may madakpan sila nga ginpaasibangdan nga katapo sang NPA o sa yunit milisya, lain naman nga patu-pato nga kaso ang ila ginapasaka.

Kon matuod gid man nga may kaso nga rape si But-ay, mas nagakaangay lang nga ipaagi ini sa husto kag nagakaigo nga proseso (due process) sa korte. May nagatindog nga Rebolusyonaryong Korte sang Pumuluyo nga ginapundar sa rebolusyonaryong kahublagan. Bisan sin-o nga indibidwal o grupo nga may ginaatubang nga sala batok sa pumuluyo, tampad kag nagadampig ang rebolusyonaryong korte sa husto kag ginapatuman ang rebolusyonaryo nga hustisya sa diin man nga patag.

Ginapakamalaot man sang MCC-NPA ang mga pakana kag diskarte sang 94th IB nga pagdala sang trumpa nga nagasinggit sang “surender na kamo, mga NPA, kag guwa na kamo dira sa inyo ginatagoan!” samtang nagapanglighot sang mga kalatian sang Sityo Cunalom kag sa mga katambi ini nga mga sityo sadtong Hulyo 25 tubtob Hulyo 28. Pila ka adlaw nga wala nagkadto sa uma kag nakapanglawig sang ila kasapatan ang mga mangunguma sa amu nga lugar bangud sa kahadlok nga basin masal-an nga katapo sang NPA kag dakpon sila sang nasambit nga militar.

Sa pihak bahin, ginkundenar man sang MCC-NPA ang pagpanglapas sa tawhanon nga kinamatarung sang 94th IB sa Sityo Amaga, Brgy. Buenavista, Himamaylan City sadtong Hulyo 9. Gin-imbestigar si Betmar Pacheco, isa ka mangunguma, kag ginlagas ang iya nagabusong nga asawa nga nagpalagyo pakadto sa ila tupad balay bangud sa kahadlok.

Ini nga mga kalakasan sang mga bayaran kag pasista nga AFP/PNP/NTF-Elcac batok sa pumuluyo, nagapakita lang sa ila pagka-talawan. Ang mga pumuluyo ang ila gin-target sa ila mahigko nga kontra-insurhensya nga kampanya agud hinabonan ang ila kapaslawan sa paglagas sa NPA kag sa bilog nga rebolusyonaryo nga kahublagan.

Wala man gid sang malauman ang mangunguma kag pumuluyo sa mas nagkasingki nga kapintas sa mga pwersa sa estado kundi ang makigbahin sa pungsodnon demokratiko nga rebolusyon paagi sa pangmalawigon nga inaway banwa agud maangkon ang matuod nga kahilwayan.

CPP/NPA-Central Negros: Komunidad sang IP’s sa Isabela, Ginalusob sang 62nd IB

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 2, 2023): Komunidad sang IP’s sa Isabela, Ginalusob sang 62nd IB (Community of IP's in Isabela, Invaded by 62nd IB)

JB Regalado
NPA-Central Negros (Leonardo Panaligan Command)
Negros Island Regional Operational Command (Apolinario Gatmaitan Command)
New People's Army

August 02, 2023

Kapin sa 100 ka tropa sang berdugong 62nd IB ang liwat naman naglusob sa komunidad sang Indigenous People (IP’s) sa Sityo Caliban, Brgy. Banog-banog, Isabela, Negros Occidental subong nga adlaw.

Naglab-ot sa duha ka kolum sa tropa militarang nag-okupar sa nasambit nga sityo. Nagapangsaka-saka kag nagatiner sa mga kabalayan. Nagtuga sang kakugmat kag perwisyo ang presenya sang militar sa mga kabataan kag mga residente sa lugar. Nagapangsita, naga-imbestigar kag nagapanuhot-suhot sa mga kalibunan. Ginapanglapak sang militar ang mga pananom sang mga mangunguma sa pihak sang grabe pa nga halit sang bagyo Dodong kag bagyo Egay sa ila pananom kag palangabuhian. Samtang may isa pa ka kolum sang pasistang militar sa Sityo Hinagduan, Brgy Riverside sang amo gihapon nga banwa.

Hulyo 31 tubtob subong Agosto 2, padayon nga nagalambiyong ang tatlo ka kolum sang pasistang tropa militar sa mga sityo sang Agogolo, Tubod kag Brgy. proper sang Brgy. Macagahay, Moises Padilla, Negros Occidental. Nagatiner sa Brgy. hall kag mga kabalayan sang nasambit nga baryo. Ginabulubanta mga 150 ka tropa militar ang nag-okupar sa lugar.

Sa Guihulngan City, padayon nagatiner ang kapin sa 100 man ka elemento sa 62nd IB sa Kambairan Elementary School sakop sang Brgy. Trinidad. May isa man ka kolum nga nagapanglusob sa mga kabalayan sa Sityo Amumuyong, Brgy. Trinidad kag sa mga kasikbit pa nga mga sityo.

CPP/NDF-Palawan: SONA 2023, hungkag! Walang tunay na kaunlarang nakamit ang mga Palaweño sa unang taon ng ilehitimong rehimeng US-Marcos II!

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 2, 2023): SONA 2023, hungkag! Walang tunay na kaunlarang nakamit ang mga Palaweño sa unang taon ng ilehitimong rehimeng US-Marcos II! (SONA 2023, hollow! Palaweños achieved no real progress in the first year of the illegitimate US-Marcos II regime!)

Leona Paragua
NDF-Southern Tagalog
National Democratic Front of the Philippines

August 02, 2023

Hungkag, pawang mga kasinungalingan, at hindi sinalamin ng State of the Nation Address 2023 ng ilehitimong presidente ng reaksyunaryong gubyerno na si Ferdinand Marcos II ang tunay na kalagayan ng bansa at ng mamamayang Pilipino. Ni wala itong binanggit na mga partikular na kalagayan at proyekto sa Palawan, gayong kaliwa’t kanan ang mga desperasyon at maniobra ng rehimen, kasabwat ang mga dayuhan at lokal na naghaharing uring burukrata kapitalista, malalaking burgesya kumprador at panginoong maylupa sa paglapastangan sa kalikasan at mamamayan ng probinsya.

Sagad sa pagiging baligho ang ipinresenta niya sa kanyang SONA na “sound and improving” ang kalagayan ng bansa sa batayan ng mga pinaganda at minahikang datos. Hindi man lamang naramdaman ng mamamayang Palaweño ang ipinangangalandakan niyang kaunlaran na nakamit umano sa kanyang unang taong termino. Walang nagbago sa kalagayan ng mga magsasaka, manggagawa, at iba pang inaapi’t pinagsasamantalahang uri at sektor sa Palawan, bagkus tumindi pa ang nararanasang kahirapan at kagutuman dahil sa patuloy na lumalalang krisis ng malakolonyal at malapyudal na lipunan.

Hungkag din ang tema ng kanyang ikalawang SONA na “walang maiiwan”, katulad ng tema ng unang SONA niya noong nakaraang taon na “ang pangarap mo ay pangarap ko”, at walang ipinag-iba sa mga napakong ipinangako ng mga nagdaang rehimen. Katunayan, malayo nang naiwan ng napakatataas na presyo ng batayang bilihing bigas, petrolyo atbp ang mababang sahod ng mga manggagawa at bagsak na presyo ng produkto ng mga magsasaka. Tanging ang mga naghaharing-uring panginoong maylupa, malaking burgesyang kumprador at dayuhang mamumuhunan lamang ang pinakikinggan ng rehimen at sinusunod na interes.

Pangunahing nakayukod ang papet na rehimen sa interes at kumpas ng imperyalismong US. Garapalang sinusunod nito ang mga adyenda ng US ng pagpapalakas ng kontrol sa rehiyong Indo-Pasipiko laban sa China. Dahil sa estratehikong lokasyon ng bansa, nagdagdag ng mga base militar ang US sa bisa ng Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement. Kabilang sa mga dagdag na base ang Balabac Island sa Palawan kung saan nagpapatuloy ang konstruksyon bukod pa sa mga dati na nitong nakatayong base na Antonio Bautista Air Base at Naval Station Carlito Cunanan sa Puerto Princesa City. Buwan-buwan ang nagaganap na magkatambal na ehersisyong militar sa probinsya na nilahukan ng mersenaryong armadong tropa ng US at ng Pilipinas, tampok ang inilunsad na pinakamalaking Balikatan Exercises 2023 sa buong kasaysayan nito.

Upang suhayan pa ang adyendang militar ng US sa Palawan, isinusulong din ng rehimen ang pagtatayo ng magastos, di-ligtas, at di subok na plantang nukleyar ng small modular reactor upang maging lunsaran ng mga eksperimento ng paggawa at pagpapaunlad ng mga armas nukleyar. Ito ang ubod ng nilalaman ng 1-2-3 Agreement na dinala ni US Vice President Kamala Harris sa pagbisita sa bansa noong Nobyembre ng nakaraang taon. Pilit na ipinalulunok ito sa mamamayang Palaweño upang tanggapin nila sa tabing ng kakulangan ng kuryente sa probinsya. Sa katunayan, hindi prayoridad ng rehimen na maghatid ng libre o kahit man lang mura at abot-kayang kuryente sa mamamayan ng Palawan. Hanggang ngayon, maraming lugar sa Palawan ang hindi pa rin naaabot ng kuryente habang mataas naman ang singil ng PALECO sa mga naseserbisyuhan nito. Paubos na ang enerhiyang nakukuha mula sa Malampaya project sa Palawan na hindi naman ang mamamayang Palaweño ang nakinabang. Ang mga programa ng rehimen para sa enerhiya ay para lamang magsilbi sa pagpapayaman at negosyo ng mga oligarko at pribadong kumpanya na nagmomonopolyo sa produksyon ng langis at enerhiya sa bansa.

Ang mga naglipanang negosyo ng mga naghaharing-uri rin ang dahilan kaya nasasaid ang iba pang likas na yaman sa Palawan. Patuloy na nakakalbo ang kagubatan at kabundukan laluna ng Timog Palawan dahil pinamumugaran ito ng mga dambuhala at mapaminsalang dayuhang mina. Dagdag pa rito ang pinsalang hatid sa kalikasan ng mga operasyon ng iligal na pagtotroso sa pangunguna ni Jose Alvarez. Ang dating pagkilala sa probinsya bilang huling ekolohikal na prontera ay unti-unting nabubura dahil sa tuluy-tuloy na paglapastangan sa kalikasan ng Palawan.

Upang higit pang ilako at ihain ang probinsya sa mga lokal at dayuhang mamumuhunang burgesya kumprador, ipinapatupad ng rehimen ang mga patakarang pambansa at lokal na hindi naman tunay na nangangalaga sa kalikasan at likas na yaman ng probinsya, bagkus ay pumipinsala sa buhay, kabuhayan at panirahan ng mamamayan. Nangangamba ang mga mangingisdang Palaweño sa ireresulta ng pagrebyu sa Fisheries Code na binanggit ni Marcos II sa kanyang SONA. Malamang na babaguhin nito ang takdang eryang maaaring pangisdaan. Malaon nang nagigipit ang mga mangingisda ng lalawigan sa mga mahihigpit na patakaran sa ilalim ng nasabing batas, ng Strategic Environment Plan, Palawan Council Administrative Order No. 5 at No Build Zone Policy.

Sa pangkalahatan, nananatili ang naunang hatol ng rebolusyonaryong kilusan sa Palawan, sampu ng buong mamamayang Palaweño, na palpak, pahirap, sukdulang pagpapaalipin at waldas ang unang taon ng ilehitimong rehimeng US-Marcos II! Walang Bagong Pilipinas dahil wala namang nagbago sa panlipunang kalagayan ng bansa na malakolonyal at malapyudal, at nananatili ang paghahari ng tatlong salot na imperyalismo, pyudalismo at burukrata kapitalismo. Walang aasahan ang sambayanang Pilipino na kaunlaran, kaginhawaan at kapanatagan sa ilalim ng papet, korap, kontra-mamamayan, pahirap at pasistang presidente.

Dapat na ibayong isulong ang demokratikong rebolusyong bayan sa Palawan at sa buong bansa. Tinatawagang sumampa sa Bagong Hukbong Bayan ang lahat ng mamamayang Palaweñong binigo ng nagpalit-palitang rehimen at hanggang ngayo’y nakararanas ng matinding kahirapan at kagutuman. Sa pamumuno ng Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas, ipagwawagi ang digmang bayan at hahawanin ang landas sa pagtatayo ng demokratikong gubyernong bayan na tunay na maglilingkod sa mamamayan. At sa araw ng tagumpay, maibabandila sa buong mundo ang pagdating ng tunay na isang bagong Pilipinas—ang tunay na malaya, demokratiko, maunlad at masaganang Pilipinas! ###

CPP/NPA-Batangas: Isagani Isita, Hindi Terorista! Bayani ng Sambayanan!

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 1, 2023): Isagani Isita, Hindi Terorista! Bayani ng Sambayanan! (Isagani Isita, Not a Terrorist! Hero of the People!)

Gregorio Caraig
NPA-Batangas (Eduardo Dagli Command)
Southern Tagalog Regional Operational Command (Melito Glor Command)
New People's Army

August 01, 2023

Sino si Isagani Isita? Hindi sya terorista na katulad ng gustong palabasin ng 59th IB-PA at MIG-4 na pumaslang sa kanya. Tubong Padre Garcia, Batangas, isa siyang pinagpipitagang lider-masa at tagapagtanggol ng mga karapatan ng masang anakpawis. Isang mahusay na organisador ng mga manggagawa, magsasaka, maralitang-lunsod at iba pang inaapi. Walang pag-iimbot nyang ibinigay ang kanyang talino at buhay para ipaglaban ang karapatan ng sambayanang Pilipino.

Dahil sa kanyang pagiging mahusay na organisador at lider-masa na nagtagtaguyod ng karapatang tao, nakaranas sya ng matinding harasment at pagbabanta sa buhay mula sa reaksyunaryong estado at berdugong militar upang patigilin sa pagtulong sa mga inaapi at nangangailangan.

Dulot ng matinding panunupil na naranasan ni Isagani Isita, napilitan nyang iwan ang legal na pakikibaka at mulat nyang pinili ang landas ng armadong pakikibaka dahil dito niya nakita na makakamit lamang ang tunay na hustisyang panlipunan sa pamamagitan ng ibayong pagsusulong ng makatarungang digma. Sa pagiging kasapi ng NPA, higit syang namulat, hindi na lamang para sa kanyang sarili kundi para sa buong sambayanang inaapi at pinagsasamantalahan. Mas napalapit sya sa mga magsasaka at iba pang api dahil sa pangunguna nya sa pakikibaka at pagsusulong ng rebolusyunaryong agraryo at pagkakamit ng rebolusyunaryong hustisya para sa mga biktima ng terorismo ng estado.

Sa sobrang kawalanghiyaan ng 59th IB-PA, sinampahan sya ng gawa-gawang kaso kasama ng iba pang mga personahe na tagapagtanggol ng karapatang tao upang pagtakpan ang kanilang karumaldumal na krimen ng pagpatay sa siyam na taong-gulang na si Kyllene Casao at may kapansanan sa pag-iisip na si Maximino Digno.

Noong July 30, alas-tres ng madaling araw, pinaslang ng 59th IB-PA at MIG-4 si kasamang Isagani Isita. Nanlaban daw ito habang inihahain ang warrant of arrest kaya sya napaslang. Paano makakapanlaban ang isang may kapansanan na kagaya ni Kasamang Isagani Isita? Katulad ng kanilang mga taktika sa iba pang biktima ng EJK, kunyaring ihahain ang warrant of arrest sa madaling araw para paslangin ang mga biktima at upang walang makakitang mga mamamayan sa kanilang karumaldumal na krimen.

Ninakaw pa ng 59th IB-PA at MIG-4 ang mga personal na gamit nito. Hindi nila inilabas ang laptop, mga android cellphone, pera at iba pang personal na pag-aari ni Kasamang Isagani Isita. Para pagtakpan ang kanilang kawalanghiyaan, tinaniman pa ng mga iligal na ebidensya kagaya ng M16 at mga bala para palabasing nanlaban ito.

Walang puso at tunay na mga berdugo talaga ang 59th IB-PA, makatapos na paslangin ang kanilang padre de pamilya, ang naiwang pamilya naman nito ang gustong harasin ng mga kasundaluhan. Ipinaabot ng ilang concerned citizen sa EDC-NPA, na ipinipilit ng ilang kasundaluhan mula sa 59th IB-PA na nagmamanman sa labas ng compound ng Pamilya Isita na kausapin ang mga paslit na anak nito sa mismong burol ng kanilang pinakamamahal na ama. Isang malaking sampal sa 59th IB-PA ang pagdagsa ng laksa-laksang mamamayan na nakidalamhati at personal na pumupunta sa lamay ni Kasamang Isagani Isita.

Sisingilin at papanagutin ng mga Batangueño ang mamamatay-taong 59th IB-PA at ang buong institusyon ng AFP at PNP! Pikit-mata silang nagpapagamit at ang tanging ipinagtatanggol lamang nila ay ang interes ng imperyalismong US, malalaking burgesya-kumprador at panginoong may-lupa!

Ang Eduardo Dagli Command – NPA Batangas, kasama ng rebolusyonaryong base nito ay paiigtingin ang mga taktikal na opensiba at pagpaparusa sa lahat ng militar, CAFGU, para-militar at mga taksil na nagpapagamit at may utang na dugo sa taumbayan. Mananaig at maihahatol sa inyo ang rebolusyonaryong hustisya! Hindi katulad ng hustisyang inilalako ng rehimeng US-Marcos II, gamit ang mga reaksyunaryong institusyon ng gobyerno katulad ng DOJ at AFP, na pumapabor lamang sa naghaharing uri.

Nananawagan ang Eduardo Dagli Command sa mamamayang Batangueño na patuloy na pinagsasamantalahan ng nabubulok na malakolonyal at malapyudal na sistema, magpasya at ipaglaban ang kanilang karapatan! Lumahok sa digmang bayan upang makamit ang lipunang malaya sa pang-aapi at pagsasamantala ng imperyalismong US, pyudalismo at burukrata-kapitalismo! Sumapi sa Bagong Hukbong Bayan!


CPP/NDF-Negros Island: Demand for justice, expose worsening fascism in Negros

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 1, 2023): Demand for justice, expose worsening fascism in Negros

Bayani Obrero
NDF-Negros Island
National Democratic Front of the Philippines

August 01, 2023

Arecent forensic report on murdered National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) consultant and former political prisoner Ericson Acosta revealed the monstrosity of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the counterrevolutionary war of the US-Marcos II regime.

According to the report, Acosta was shot post-mortem—an inhumane act which proved that Acosta and peasant organizer Joseph Jimenez were murdered in cold-blood by state forces. The 3rd ID’s false claim of an encounter is but a trademark of their barbarism, shamelessly peddling lies to cover up their numerous human rights violations on the island.

On the second quarter of 2023 alone, 92 cases of HRVs were recorded in Negros, affecting more than 3,000 individuals. These cases, part of more than 300 in just a year of Marcos Jr’s reign, involve the AFP, Philippine National Police (PNP) and National Task Force (NTF)-Elcac’s fabrications of fake encounters, forced surrenders, murders of civilians and hors de combats, illegal arrests, among others.

Fear and impunity are tools of the desperate ruling class to cling on to the rotting semi-colonial and semi-feudal system. And history has taught us well that these tools cannot deter the will of the masses knee-deep in such a cruel system, desirous of change.

Thus, NDF-Negros invites the media, human rights groups and advocates, and other concerned organizations and individuals to integrate in the militarized communities and extract the truth amid the sea of lies harped on by the AFP. The people are the genuine source of the truth, not the worn-out script of the likes of Arevalo, Sison, and their sycophant cohorts.

Furthermore, NDF-Negros strongly urges patriotic troops from the rank-and-file of the AFP and PNP, and those victimized by the NTF-Elcac’s various anomalous programs, to reveal the truth of the various killings and crimes committed by these mercenary institutions. You know better than becoming attack dogs and cannon fodder of your corrupt generals and their imperialist masters.

The fight for justice continues. In this dark era where lie after lie has become the norm to cloak the crimes of the state, it is the duty of the people to bravely fight for the truth.

It is a difficult yet a necessary fight to defend the oppressed majority of farmers and workers. The more crimes the reactionary troops commit, the more we must affirm how exploitation begets collective resistance.

CPP/CIO: Use of terror law for suppression, now reaching new levels of impunity and absurdity

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Aug 1, 2023): Use of terror law for suppression, now reaching new levels of impunity and absurdity

This article is available in Pilipino

Marco Valbuena
Chief Information Officer
Communist Party of the Philippines

August 01, 2023

The Marcos regime and its military and police forces must be roundly condemned for the increasingly malevolent use of the deceitfully named Anti-Terrorism Law (ATL) in their heightened campaign of suppression against various democratic forces, critics, and political opponents.

Over the past few weeks, human rights defenders and members of cause-oriented organizations have been “designated” as “terrorists” by the Anti-Terrorism Council or charged in court for “terrorism” in a patently arbitrary manner, without due process and in utter violation of broadly accepted standards of judicial processes.

The ATL is now being used as a tool for suppression with impunity. The most recent victim of the draconian ATL is Hailey Pecayo, a 19-year old human rights worker, who earned the ire of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for having actively exposed the role of the military for the killing of a nine-year old child in Batangas last year. She is now being charged by the AFP under the ATL, together with other members of their human rights group.

Before Pecayo, at least six others, including Windel Bolinget and three other members of the Cordillera People’s Alliance (CPA), were tagged as “terrorists” by the ATC. In a much earlier resolution, Dr. Natividad Castro, a medical doctor working for the Karapatan Alliance in Mindanao, was similarly tagged by the ATC. It is particularly noteworthy that the ATC resolutions against Bolinget and Castro both came after courts dismissed false charges filed by the AFP linking them to armed actions of the NPA.

The use of the ATL as a tool of suppression has now reached absurd and brazen levels with the ATC “designating” Congressman Arnolfo Teves and 12 others accused of perpetrating the March 4 killing of former Negros Oriental Governor Noel Degamo. Marcos officials have resorted to using the ATL against Teves after failing to build up a court case him. Aiming the ATL against Teves also serves as warning of the extent that Marcos will use the law for his purposes.

The CPP denounces the use of the ATL as a weapon of political suppression. The Party also expresses its continuing protest against the “terrorist designation” of the CPP, the New People’s Army and the National Democratic Front, of its leaders and representatives, and others being linked to the revolutionary cause.

Despite the September 21, 2022 ruling of the Manila Trial Court dismissing the petition filed by the government to declare the CPP and NPA as “terrorists” under the Human Security Act (the former name of the ATL), the Marcos regime and its agents insist on pinning the “terrorist” tag as part of its systematic campaign against all patriotic and democratic forces.

In light of the heightened attacks against the broad democratic sectors using the ATL, the Filipino people’s demand for the abrogation of the draconian law has become even more urgent. All democracy-loving people must make a stand and lend their voice to the struggle to defend the people’s rights and freedoms against state repression.

The Party supports the Filipino people’s clamor to end the so-called “war on terror” which, in fact, is a camouflage for unbounded state terrorism. This fascist framework has long been abused by the Philippine ruling class state, in order to justify the systematic erosion of the people’s civil and political rights.

The military and security establishment has used the “war on terror” to claim extraordinary powers to assert domination over society, take control of the functions of civilian agencies of government and carry out any and all acts of state suppression with gross impunity.

CPP/NPA-Central Negros: 1 Patay, 1 Pilason sa 62nd IB sa Guihulngan City

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Jul 31, 2023): 1 Patay, 1 Pilason sa 62nd IB sa Guihulngan City (1 Dead, 1 Wounded in the 62nd IB in Guihulngan City)

JB Regalado
NPA-Central Negros (Leonardo Panaligan Command)
Negros Island Regional Operational Command (Apolinario Gatmaitan Command)
New People's Army

July 31, 2023

Isa patay kag isa man pilason sa tropa sang 62nd IB sang ginharas sang isa ka yunit sang New People’s Army idalom sa Leonardo Panaligan Command (LPC-NPA) ang Casingan Army Detachment sa Brgy. Trinidad, Guihulngan City pasado alas 6:00 sang gab-i, Hulyo 30.

Ini ang sabat sang LPC-NPA sa mga focused military operation (FMO) kag madata na nga mga kalapasan sang nasambit nga pasistang tropa sa tawhanon nga kinamatarung kaangay sang iligal nga pagpang-aresto, pagpangkastigo, pagpamahug, kag pilit nga pagpasurender sa mga sibilyan ilabi na gid ang brutal nga pagpamatay sa mga mangunguma. Nadumduman tuig 2022-2023, brutal nga ginpatay sang berdugong 62nd IB si Pompeo Landisa, Greg Cantela, Victoriano Baldonado, Orlando Fat kag pagmasaker sa pamilya Jacolbe sadtong Hulyo 26, 2022 diin patay si Cristina Jacolbe, 16 anyos nga si Everly Kee Jacolbe kag Rodan Montero, tanan sang Brgy. Trinidad, Guihulngan City.

Wala sang palaabuton nga hustisya ang pamilya sang mga biktima sang pagbayolar sang tawhanon nga kinamatarung sa reaksyonaryong korte sang estado. Wala man sang malauman nga hustisya-sosyal ang pigos nga kadam-an nga pumuluyo sa inutil, korap kag tuta nga rehimen US-Marcos Jr.

Ang bug-os nga rebolusyonaryong kahublagan sa pagpamuno sang Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) ang determinado nga nagatib-ong sang matuod nga reporma sa duta kag pungsodnon nga industriyalisasyon. Pursigido nga ginasulong ang demokratiko nga rebolusyon sang banwa paagi sa pangmalawigon nga inaway banwa nga nanguna nga ginapatuman sang NPA bilang hinganiban sa pag-agaw sang gahum pulitika sa reaksyon sa katumanan sang tunay, makatarunganon nga kalinong kag hustisya-sosyal.

Paslawon ang FMO sang pasistang militar sa Central Negros! Isulong ang inaway banwa tubtob sa kadalag-an! ###