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CPP-NPA anti-family, Esperon says

By Priam Nepomuceno / Philippine News Agency

Secretary Hermogenes Esperon, Jr., National Security Adviser (File photo)

MANILA – Aside from being anti-development, the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA) is also against the community and family, and will do everything it can to break up these bonds.

This, according to National Security Adviser, Secretary Hermogenes Esperon, Jr., during an interview with the Cabinet Report program hosted by President Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar on Aug. 20.

"Alam mo itong NPA na ito, masabi ko lang ay anti-family ito. Pinaghihiwalay ang asosasyon ng magsasaka, asosasyon ng kababaihan, asosasyon ng kabataan. Bine-break up nila iyong pamilya, may hatred, itong anak hindi na kailangang sumunod doon sa magulang (You know, the NPA, I can say that they are anti-family, not only that they try to separate the association of farmers, association of women, association of the youth. They are breaking up the family, they have a hatred for the family. They don't want the children obeying their parents)," he added.

Esperon, who is National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) vice-chairperson, cited the case of Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Eufemia Cullamat, who he claimed continue to recruit Indigenous Peoples (IP) into the NPA despite having her daughter killed in an encounter with military troops in Barangay San Isidro, Marihatag, Surigao del Sur on November 28.

"Eh ang ginagawa naman niya ay hinihikayat niya ang mga IP doon sa Surigao para sumama sa NPA. Pambihira, iyong anak nga niya namatay sa engkuwentro. Para akong nalulungkot doon eh, dahil namatay na nga iyong anak niya, parang hindi pa niya binisita (What she does is continue to convince or recruit IPs in Surigao to join the NPA. This is strange. Her daughter was killed in an encounter, I was saddened by the fact that her daughter was killed and yet she seems not to have visited [wake])," he added.

Earlier, Presidential Human Rights Committee Secretariat Executive Director, Undersecretary Severo Catura, said the destruction of families, especially those of IPs, due to communist terrorist recruitment and radicalization, is the reason why the government is pushing hard to end the threat posed by the CPP-NPA.

"This destruction of our families is actually what drives the state, our government to end the local communist armed conflict because it will always be our responsibility to quell all continuing threats to the right to life, liberty, and security of persons, especially of our children in IP communities," added Catura, who is also NTF-ELCAC spokesperson for international affairs, peace process, and human rights concerns, said.

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

Esperon said the CPP-NPA uses hatred to fuel anger and agitate their recruits against the government.

In fanning hated among their new recruits, communist terrorists would usually use the narratives on the lack of development and poverty experienced by these individuals and their families.

He also slammed CPP founding chair Jose Maria "Joma" Sison and other NPA leaders for living a luxurious life in Europe with the funds extorted by their NPA guerrillas.

"Ang dami-dami nilang nakokolektang pondo ngayon, sino ang nakikinabang? Iyon si Jose Maria Sison, namamayagpag doon sa Europa. Namamayagpag sila sa lifestyle nila, may mga anak sila na naka-enroll sa mga universities abroad (There a lot of funds being collected by the NPA but who benefits? The likes of Jose Maria Sison, who is now living a good life in Europe, some of them even have their children studying in universities abroad)," he added.

He said the NTF-ELCAC has unmasked the CPP-NPA-National Democratic Front.

"Through strategic communications, through information to the public, hindi ito red-tagging, kung hindi informing the public kung sino talaga sila (This is not red-tagging bit informing the public of what they really are)," Esperon added.

The government’s anti-insurgency body was able to inform the public about the underground mass organizations controlling front groups of communist terrorists.

Some of the underground mass organizations, Esperon said, include the Kabataang Makabayan for the youth; KAGUMA or the Kapisanan ng mga Gurong Makabayan which controls the Alliance of Concerned Teachers.

"In other words, we are informing the public na hindi lang sila innocent civilians kung hindi members sila ng communist party. Iyong mga nandiyan sa House of Representatives na party-list na Makabayan dawpero Kamatayan Bloc (They are not innocent civilians but members of the communist party, there are those members of the House of the Representatives party-lists calling them 'Makabayan'(patriotic) but in reality are Kamatayan [death] Bloc (members)," he added. (PNA)



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