NTF-ELCAC to Makabayan bloc: Denounce 'terrible crimes' of communist rebels
By Virgil Lopez / GMA News
The National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) on Monday dared the Makabayan lawmakers to condemn the alleged atrocities committed by the communist rebels against the Filipino people.
At a news conference, NTF-ELCAC spokesperson on social media issues and sectoral concerns Lorraine Badoy said she is wondering why these left-leaning party-list legislators have remained silent on the matter.
“We’ve been waiting for them to denounce the terrible crimes of the CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front) against the Filipino people for the past 52 years and so far the silence again is deafening,” said Badoy, who is also an undersecretary of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO).
“We cannot gloss over the silence of people who pride themselves [on being] elected by the people.”
Badoy also asked the left-wing human rights group Karapatan to denounce the CPP-NPA-NDF's alleged atrocities and violations of the international humanitarian law.
“That is the challenge. You can still maybe redeem yourselves and denounce what ought to be denounced,” she said.
Badoy’s call came days after the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) submitted to Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Commissioner Karen Dumpit a list of hundreds of “willful killings” and other atrocities such as recruitment of child soldiers linked to the communist rebels from 2010 to 2020.
“Commissioner Dumpit said they will forward the cases to their regional offices for their investigation. They now have a total of 1,506 cases to investigate. The gathering of other cases are ongoing,” said Brigadier General Jose Alejandro Nacnac, director of the AFP Center for the Law on Armed Conflict, in a statement.
Last November, President Rodrigo Duterte indicated that groups such as the Makabayan bloc in the House of Representatives, Bayan and Gabriela are fronts for the CPP-NPA-NDF.
The Makabayan bloc immediately denied the President’s claim, dismissing it as a tactic to hide the government’s supposed incompetence in handling the country’s problems such as the COVID-19 crisis and an attempt to stifle dissent. (KBK, GMA News)