Army cites bravery of Caraga teachers who cut ties with ACT
By Alexander Lopez / Philippine News Agency
Brig. Gen. Maurito L. Licudine, commander of the Army's 402nd Infantry Brigade. (PNA file photo)
BUTUAN CITY – An official of the Philippine Army on Monday cited the bravery of teachers from the different schools in the Caraga Region for disaffiliating themselves from the leftist group Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT).
In a statement Monday (May 10), Brig. Gen. Maurito L. Licudine, commander of the Army's 402nd Infantry Brigade (402Bde), said teachers who renounce their membership with ACT need to be emulated by other sectors that are still being "deceived" by front organizations of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), its armed wing the New People’s Army (NPA), and its political arm the National Democratic Front (NDF).
“We are hoping that there are still other sectors who will emulate what the teachers have done in disaffiliating themselves with the CTG (Communist Terrorist Group) legal front organizations because it is only when we are unified thru the whole of nation approach, that we can easily defeat the CTG and end the insurgency problem,” Licudine said.
Last Thursday, at least 604 elementary and secondary teachers from Butuan City disaffiliated and withdrew their support for ACT during the one-day seminar on Situational Awareness and Knowledge Management (SAKM) and on National Security Concerns conducted by the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency in Region 10 (NICA-10) at the Agusan National High School here.
The activity was conducted in coordination with the Department of Education in Caraga (DepEd-13), the 402Bde, and the Police Regional Office in Caraga (PRO-13).
The activity was also joined by Rey Collado, the District Supervisor of South West District of DepEd-Butuan, who once served as the designated ACT chairperson in the area.
Collado led the disaffiliation of the 604 teachers from ACT through the pledge and signing of commitment conducted during the activity.
“I am very thankful for the information because we can’t afford to be with an organization that goes against our government. Never, never, never in my wildest dream that I will rebel against my beloved country. Today, with the teachers of Central Butuan District 1, we will denounce any affiliation, connection, association with the ACT. That we are sincere and true to our oath of allegiance to our government as civil servants,” Collado was quoted by 402Bde as saying.
Meanwhile, Licudine acknowledged the efforts of NICA-10 and other government agencies for helping the teachers "realize the true character of ACT as an organization."
ACT, along with KMU, KMP, Gabriela, League of Filipino Students, and KADENA was named by CPP founding chairman Jose Maria Sison in an international conference in Belgium in 1987, as part of the CPP-NPA’s democratic forces in advancing their Philippine revolution.
He also called on the other local sectors "to be wary about the organizations linked with the CPP-NPA-NDF."
“This activity is another proof that we, the government and the TF-ELCAC (Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict) need to step up the information campaign to all sectors so that we could reach those who are unaware that they’ve been used already or deceived out of issues related to them,” Licudine said.
The NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. (PNA)