Tag Archives: AFP

Philippine guerillas deny using children in war

By Gerry Albert Corpuz in Manila and Billy Javier Reyes in Tacloban City

MANILA, Philippines- The communist led National Democratic Front of the Philippines in Eastern Visayas (NDFP-Eastern Visayas on Thursday issued a categorical statement denying accusations by the Philippine military that the Maoist guerillas waging a 40-year old people’s protracted war against the Manila government were abusing children to advance their revolutionary cause.

In a press statement sent to http://www.allvoices.com, NDFP-Eastern Samar spokesperson Fr. Santiago Salas said it is the Armed Foces of the Philippines (AFP) which has concrete cases of abusing children in situations of armed conflict in the Philippines.

Fr. Salas said he issued the statement to correct the malicious news in a national daily which mistated the facts of a United Nations report, making it appear that the communist guerillas were using child combatants, though it was never said so.

“In the said UN report, it is in fact the AFP that is cited for documented cases of abusing children in situations of armed conflict. The NDFP-Eastern Visayas can further shed light on the matter because the 8th Infantry Division has
well-publicized cases on the matter in Eastern Visayas,” Salas stressed.

Fr. Salas said that the Government of the Republic of the Philippines
continues to keep 17-year-old Michelle Adelantar in custody through
the Department of Social Welfare and Development after her illegal
arrest and detention by the 8th Infrantry Division of the Philippine
Army.

“Michelle was abducted and detained last February 3 in San Jose de
Buan, Western Samar by the 34th Infantry Battalion, merely because she
was the child of members of the Communist Party of the Philippines and
the New People’s Army. She still remains in DSWD custody with the
complicity of the 8th ID even though she has civilian relatives who
are ready and willing to take her in and have in fact long demanded
her release,” the NDFP said.

NDFP-Visayas said Col. Armand Rico, 8th ID spokesperson, recently stated over the 8th ID radio program he handles, the reason why the military wants
Michelle detained.

‘Her parents are NPA members, her siblings are NPA members.’ This is unjust, illegitimate, arrogant and mean. This, as well as other statements by Col. Rico, serve as evidence of the AFP’s violations of the rights of children in the armed conflict with the NDFP,” the NDFP statement added.

Fr. Salas recalled that another damning case of the AFP’s child abuse is that of Joel “Dayucdoc” Silvestre, a mentally-handicapped 13-year-old from Brgy. Montalban, Matuguinao, Western Samar who was claimed by the 8th ID to be an NPA child combatant in June 2009.

“The GRP blatantly violated Joel’s rights: soldiers took advantage of
his mental handicap and tricked him so he could be taken into custody.
The military then used Joel as a guide in their military operations;
he was given a firearm and made to identify alleged NPA supporters in
his community who were then interrogated and tortured,” the NDFP-Eastern Visayas added.

The group also said the 8th ID and DSWD also presented Joel to the media, divulging his real name and allowing photos and videos of him to be taken. The NDF said aside from the ordeal they imposed on Joel, other innocent people also suffered and the public victimized with deception because of the
military’s stupid and vicious machinations.

Fr. Salas also called for justice for Michelle, Joel and other
victims of human rights violations under the military’s Oplan Bantay
Laya.

“The NDFP-Eastern Visayas reminds the GRP that it will definitely be brought to
account for violating the rights of Michelle Adelantar and Joel
“Dayucdoc” Silvestre, which are well-documented and with many
witnesses to attest the truth,” it said.

“We demand the immediate release of Michelle Adelantar. We demand
justice for the victims of Oplan Bantay Laya. We demand the arrest,
trial and punishment of the outgoing president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
for widespread and gross human rights violations under Oplan Bantay
Laya and other crimes against the people,” the NDFP-Eastern Visayas added.

Meanwhile, leading presidential candidate Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III remains hesistant to snowballing demand of peace advocates in Manila to resume the stalled talks between the NDFP and the government peace panel.

In a separate statement, the leftist fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) said the presumptive president elect Aquino was not in poltiical mood to talk peace with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), its armed wing the New People’s Army (NPA) and the NDF.

Pamalakaya chairperson Fernando Hicap believed Sen.Aquino was not really sincere in promoting peace all over the country and he will continue what were prescribed before by powerful military officials in the AFP, which were in accordance with the militaist program of Washington D.C government under the administration of US President Barack Obama. #

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Presidentiables told: Be ready for people power vs. GMA hold over presidency

By Gerry Albert Corpuz, Bb. Joyce Cabral and Billy Javier Reyes

MANILA, Philippines-The militant fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) urged on Saturday all presidential candidates to sign a covenant calling for the staging of another People Power in case the Macapagal-Arroyo administration declares failure of elections or installs a hold over presidency through a coup instigated by pro-Arroyo faction in the military.

In a press statement, Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap asked Nacionalista Party (NP) standard bearer Manny Villar, Liberal Party presidential candidate Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III,Lakas-Kampi merger party Gilbert Teodoro, Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino bet former President Joseph Bagumbayan candidate Sen. Richard Gordon, Bangon Pilipinas’s Bro. Eddie Villanueva and independent candidates Sen. Jamby Madrigal, JC de los Reyes of Ang Kapatiran Party and Nicanor Perlas to declare their readiness for another people power and commit to mobilize their political forces and members to frustrtate Arroyo’s hold over presidency in whatever form.

“Are they willing to join the people for another People Power? According to the latest survey of the Social Weather Station, 48 percent of the 92 million Filipinos are likely to join any call for popular uprising that will frustrate President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s sinister plot to perpetuate herself to power,” the fisherfolk leader said.

Likewise the same challenged was posed by Hicap to vice-presidential candidates Sen. Mar Roxas of the Liberal Party, Sen. Loren Legarda of Nacionalista Party, Bayani Fernando of Bagumbayan, Edu Manzano of Lakas-Kampi merger party, Jejomar Binay of Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino and Perfecto Yasay of Bangon Pilipinas.

The Pamalakaya leader asserted the possibility of another People Power revolution in the Philippines is not a remote scenario according to political experts closely following the turn of political events unfolding two months before the May 2010 elections that include the Supreme Court decision allowing Mrs. Arroyo to appoint the next Chief Justice two months before the elections and the designation of Gen. Delfin Bangit as the new chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

“If that is the case, then the 92 million Filipinos have no options but to take the streets for the third time around and stage another popular people uprising to frustrate President Arroyo’s attempt to perpetuate herself to power as a hold over president or chief of an installed civilian-military junta dominated by military generals loyal or associated with the party of Arroyo,” said Hicap.

Pamalakaya said the outrage expressed by political activists, lawyers, professionals and politicians opposed to the Supreme Court decision granting President Arroyo the power to appoint the next Chief Justice despite the constitutional prohibition and their opposition against the appointment of Bangit as new AFP chief is an indication that Filipinos are ready to go to the main capital for another People Power to effectively stop the ruling gangland in Malacanang from extending their terms beyond June 30, 2010.

Pamalakaya described the SC ruling as a major legal disaster and the appointment of Bangit and other rabid pro-Arroyo officials in various positions in the government highly revolting.

Pamalakaya advised President Arroyo to refrain from complicating things and instead do the most lawful, sensible and objective action that suits to the national interest and collective will of the people. It said the trouble with President Arroyo is her super obsession to stay in power beyond June 30, 2010 and the President is hell bent in appointing a Chief Justice that will follow the doctrine of Malacanang.#

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International observers told: Watch AFP on partisan politics

By Pepsi La Loma and Billy Javier Reyes

MANILA, Philippines- The leaders of the militant fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) urged on Sunday asked members of the international community observing the conduct of the May 2010 elections to monitor the possible involvement of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) identified with President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in partisan politics.

In a press statement, Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap and Pamalakaya-Vice chairperson Salvador France noted the Western election observers have focused their attention on the preparations of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and have missed one vital electoral issue, which is the partisan politics and electioneering conducted by pro-Arroyo officials in the AFP against candidates critical of the Arroyo administration that includes two progressive senatorial candidates and left-leaning party lists.

The Pamalakaya officials appealed to the US-based National Democratic Institute (NDI) to also monitor and entertain reports and cases against AFP officials and rank-and-file personnel accused of engaging in partisan politics and electioneering.

Hicap and France asked Jamie Metzl of NDI, Thomas Barry, deputy regional director of NDI for Asia, Sam Gejdenson, former member of US Congress, Nora Owen, former justice minister of Ireland and Sue Wood, former president of the New Zealand National Party to put premium on documented reports that the military are campaigning for pro-administration bets and on the other hand are campaigning against certain candidates and party lists highly critical of the Arroyo administration.

“The pro-GMA clique in the AFP is in command of all these dirty electoral campaign against progressive candidates and party lists. It is blatantly and brazenly violating provisions of the 1987 Constitution that illegalize any kind or form of military partisan politics and electioneering. We appeal to the members of the international community to give proper attention to this militarist agenda of the pro-Arroyo faction in the AFP,” the Pamalakaya leaders said.

Pamalakaya also asked members of the Western electoral watchdog to remain until June 30 to complete their observation and make an objective preliminary assessment of the May 2010 elections. The militant group said the March 12 to March 17 schedule of NDI electoral observers was short and will not give them even a comprehensive overview on how the Arroyo government and Comelec commence the 2010 elections under its stewardship.

The militant group had pressed Comelec chairman Jose Melo to invoke the constitutional provision banning all military officials and government troops from exercising partisan politics in lieu of reports that that some members of the AFP are engaged in campaigning against Makabayan senatorial candidates—Bayan Muna party list Rep. Satur Ocampo and Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza and activist party lists Bayan Muna, Gabriela and Anakpawis.

‘The commissioners of Comelec headed by Chairman Melo should impose an iron hand policy against officials and members of the AFP engaged in partisan politics. The military is violating the 1987 Constitution pertaining to partisan politics and this political-military adventure sanctioned by the ruling party in Malacanang must be put to an end,” the group said.

Leaders and members of Pamalakaya in Sorsogon said the military in the province are conducting house-to-house campaign in the province calling on all voters not to vote for militant party lists like Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Kabataan Party and Act Teachers party list. The party lists formed Makabayan coalition party that includes Katribu party list, a new party list representing indigenous people and national minority groups in the country.

On Feb.23, Army Major Arnal Manjares hurt one of the campaigners of Makabayan during a house-to-house sortie, while conducting house-to-house campaign for progressive party lists and senatorial candidates Ocampo and Maza.

Based on the report reaching the headquarters of Bayan Muna in Quezon City, Manjares slapped the face of the volunteer and threatened the victim and his companions that they would be killed and harmed if they come back again and campaign for leftwing party lists and candidates in the area.

Pamalakaya said in the last May 2007 elections, cases of partisan politics specifically against Bayan Muna, Anakpawis and Gabriela party lists were also documented Castilla Sorsogon, San Luis, Isabela, Nasugbu, Tanauan and Taysan in Batangas, Dasmarinas, Cavite, Cordon, and Cauayan, and San Luis Roxas, Isabela, Tuburan, Iloilo, Tubod, Lanao Del Norte, Palimbang Sultan Kudarat, Baggao, Cagayan, Burgos, Ilocos Norte, Kolambugan and Tubod Lanao del Norte, Roxas, Mindoro Oriental, Masbate, Guimba, Nueva Ecija, New Bataan, Compostela Valley.

There were also documented cases of military partisan politics against progressive party lists in Gumaca, Lucena, Sariaya, Candelaria, Lucena, Pagbilao, Gen. Luna and Macalelon, all in Quezon province, Alangalang and Tacloban in Leyte, North Cotabato, Marikina City, Makati City, any parts of Camarines Norte, Sa. Rosa, Laguna, Lavenzares, North Samar, Abuyog, Cagayan Valley, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Marawi City, many polling places in Lanao del Sur and many canvassing areas in Isabela.

Pamalakaya said the forms of military and police involvement include abductions and salvaging of progressive party list leaders and poll watchers, Illegal presence inside canvass areas or roaming around polling places and canvass areas, harassment of voters and forcing them not to vote militant party lists and instead vote for Palace backed party lists like Bantay of Rep. Jovito Palparan, transporting of ballot boxes in canvass areas, banning militant party list poll watchers inside the canvass areas and selecting only those they want to allow to enter, acting as bodyguards of candidates, presence of APC and 6×6 trucks near polling places and canvass areas, police counting the votes in precinct, the shooting and wounding of a Bayan Muna leader, the burning of school rooms, the Illegal arrest of poll watchers and the threatening Comelec official.

Pamalakaya also reiterated its call for Comelec to recall its previous decision allowing CAGGUs and other paramilitary units to carry fire arms during the election season. The militant group asserted that the long experience and track record of CAFGUs in partisan politics, acting as paid goons and private armies of powerful politicians, the poll body should have recalled its resolution and pursued the across-the-nation disbandment of special civilian armed forces.
Under Comelec resolution 8742 made effective last January 11, amending Resolution 8714, the CAFGU was exempted from gun ban along with members of the Presidential Security Group, Bureau of Fire Protection, Optical Media Board, the treasurers and deputy treasurers and members of the Internal Security Division of the Bureau of Treasury.
Prior to Comelec promulgation of Resolution 8714, Rear Admiral Alexander Pama, commander of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao opposed the disarming of CAAs because these paramilitary groups are tapped by fishing companies to secure their venture in the South. For his part, Lt. Gen. Ben Dolorfino, chief of Western Command said as far as the military is concerned, the CAFGUs are part of the military organization and not all CAFGUs are utilized by private companies operating in far flung areas. #

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Comelec told: Castigate AFP on partisan politics

By Mama Mila Liguasan and Akihira Tatchu

Manila, Philippines –

Pamalakaya took a brief respite after having their Feb.14 sortie in Baywalk, Manila Bay

The leaders of the militant fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) urged on Sunday the officials of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to castigate officials and rank-and-file members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) involved in partisan politics.

In a joint press statement, Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap and Vice chairperson Salvador France pressed Comelec chairman Jose Melo to invoke the constitutional provision banning all military officials and government troops from exercising partisan politics in lieu of reports that that some members of the AFP are engaged in campaigning against Makabayan senatorial candidates—Bayan Muna party list Rep. Satur Ocampo and Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza and activist party lists Bayan Muna, Gabriela and Anakpawis.

‘The commissioners of Comelec headed by Chairman Melo should impose an iron hand policy against officials and members of the AFP engaged in partisan politics. The military is violating the 1987 Constitution pertaining to partisan politics and this political-military adventure sanctioned by the ruling party in Malacanang must be put to an end,” the Pamalakaya leaders said.

Hicap and France who both came from Sorsogon learned that the military in the province are conducting house-to-house campaign in the province calling on all voters not to vote for militant party lists like Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Kabataan Party and Act Teachers party list. The party lists formed Makabayan coalition party that includes Katribu party list, a new party list representing indigenous people and national minority groups in the country.

On Feb.23, Army Major Arnal Manjares hurt one of the campaigners of Makabayan during a house-to-house sortie, while conducting house-to-house campaign for progressive party lists and senatorial candidates Ocampo and Maza.

Based on the report reaching the headquarters of Bayan Muna in Quezon City, Manjares slapped the face of the volunteer and threatened the victim and his companions that they would be killed and harmed if they come back again and campaign for leftwing party lists and candidates in the area.

Pamalakaya said in the last May 2007 elections, cases of partisan politics specifically against Bayan Muna, Anakpawis and Gabriela party lists were also documented Castilla Sorsogon, San Luis, Isabela, Nasugbu, Tanauan and Taysan in Batangas, Dasmarinas, Cavite, Cordon, and Cauayan, and San Luis Roxas, Isabela, Tuburan, Iloilo, Tubod, Lanao Del Norte, Palimbang Sultan Kudarat, Baggao, Cagayan, Burgos, Ilocos Norte, Kolambugan and Tubod Lanao del Norte, Roxas, Mindoro Oriental, Masbate, Guimba, Nueva Ecija, New Bataan, Compostela Valley.

There were also documented cases of military partisan politics against progressive party lists in Gumaca, Lucena, Sariaya, Candelaria, Lucena, Pagbilao, Gen. Luna and Macalelon, all in Quezon province, Alangalang and Tacloban in Leyte, North Cotabato, Marikina City, Makati City, any parts of Camarines Norte, Sa. Rosa, Laguna, Lavenzares, North Samar, Abuyog, Cagayan Valley, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Marawi City, many polling places in Lanao del Sur and many canvassing areas in Isabela.

Pamalakaya said the forms of military and police involvement include abductions and salvaging of progressive party list leaders and poll watchers, Illegal presence inside canvass areas or roaming around polling places and canvass areas, harassment of voters and forcing them not to vote militant party lists and instead vote for Palace backed party lists like Bantay of Rep. Jovito Palparan, transporting of ballot boxes in canvass areas, banning militant party list poll watchers inside the canvass areas and selecting only those they want to allow to enter, acting as bodyguards of candidates, presence of APC and 6×6 trucks near polling places and canvass areas, police counting the votes in precinct, the shooting and wounding of a Bayan Muna leader, the burning of school rooms, the Illegal arrest of poll watchers and the threatening Comelec official.

Pamalakaya also reiterated its call for Comelec to recall its previous decision allowing CAGGUs and other paramilitary units to carry fire arms during the election season. The militant group asserted that the long experience and track record of CAFGUs in partisan politics, acting as paid goons and private armies of powerful politicians, the poll body should have recalled its resolution and pursued the across-the-nation disbandment of special civilian armed forces.
Under Comelec resolution 8742 made effective last January 11, amending Resolution 8714, the CAFGU was exempted from gun ban along with members of the Presidential Security Group, Bureau of Fire Protection, Optical Media Board, the treasurers and deputy treasurers and members of the Internal Security Division of the Bureau of Treasury.
Prior to Comelec promulgation of Resolution 8714, Rear Admiral Alexander Pama, commander of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao opposed the disarming of CAAs because these paramilitary groups are tapped by fishing companies to secure their venture in the South. For his part, Lt. Gen. Ben Dolorfino, chief of Western Command said as far as the military is concerned, the CAFGUs are part of the military organization and not all CAFGUs are utilized by private companies operating in far flung areas. #

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6 groups grilled Defense chief on torture of Morong 43

By Chocolate Moose Fernandez and Bb. Joyce Cabral

As the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) today sets court appearance of 43 doctors and health workers before the Court of Appeals for their writ of habeas corpus hearing, six rural based groups grilled took turns in grilling Defense Secretary and National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzalez, accusing that the latter as the mastermind, if not, one of the key security officials who gave the order to abduct and torture the 43 doctors and health workers.

In a joint statement, Danilo Ramos, secretary general of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), John Milton Lozande of Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura, Cherry Clemente of Anakpawis party list, Lito Bais, acting president of United Luisita Workers Union (ULWU), Zen Soriano of Amihan peasant women federation and Fernando Hicap, chair of the left-leaning fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) said Gonzalez is the criminal mindset behind the political kidnapping, illegal arrest and detention, and day-to-day infliction of mental and physical torture on 43 medical personnel who were arrested during a raid in a resort in Morong, Rizal while conducting health seminar last week.

“The horrible tales as narrated by the victims themselves reflect the militarist mindset of the Arroyo government, the pro-Arroyo generals in the AFP and Sec. Gonzalez—the undisclosed author of counter-insurgency program Oplan Bantay Laya 1 and Oplan Bantay Laya 2,” the six militant leaders said in a statement.

“Bert Gonzalez Is Bert Gonzalez, and for President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo he is untouchable and the best entities to explain why Gonzalez is untouchable is the president herself and her master in Washington D.C,” they said, short of giving a hint that the defense chief is a deployed operative of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in the Philippines.

The groups said any congressional investigation or appropriate probe conducted by any government agency should have Secretary Gonzalez both as prime suspect and hostile witness. The fisherfolk leader said the case of Morong 43 can be objectively face with the inclusion of Gonzalez in the investigation and list of resource persons of the Senate, in case it paves way to the resolution authored by Senator Pia Cayetano calling for a Senate probe on the controversial case.

Likewise, the six groups said the Moro 43 case should merit the immediate and unconditional suspension if not removal of Sec. Gonzalez from his two posts—secretary of Department of National Defense (DND) and National Security Council (NSC) head, being Arroyo’s chief security adviser.

KMP, Pamalakaya, Anakpawis and the three other groups said prior to the abduction of 43 doctors and health workers, Sec. Gonzalez announced the government and the military are all set to resume the campaign of legal offensive against suspected communist leaders and aboveground groups and personalities which he believed have direct and indirect connections with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed wing—the New People’s Army (NPA). The directive to file criminal charges against leftwing activists and perceived leaders and members of CPP and NPA took place a week before the raid was conducted in Morong, Rizal.

Meanwhile, the six groups challenged all presidential, vice-presidential and senatorial candidates in the May 2010 elections to sign a national covenant that if they win in the elections, they will avoid a repeat of Morong 43 and that the will respect constitutionally guaranteed basic human rights and civil liberties.

The 6 militant groups noted that presidential candidates Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III and running mate Sen. Manuel Roxas of Liberal Party (LP), Manny Villar of Nacionalista Party, Richard Gordon and running mate, former MMDA chair Bayani Fernando, Lakas-Kampi vice-presidential bet Edu Manzano, independents JC de los Reyes and Nicanor Perlas and Bangon Pilipinas’ Bro. Eddie Villanueva have yet to issue official statements on the defective arrest of 43 medical persons.

The groups said the same holds true to majority of senatorial candidates, and only a handful led by Nacionalista Party (NP) guest candidates Reps. Satur Ocampo (Bayan Muna) and Liza Maza (Gabriela) and Sen. Cayetano also of NP have sent official statements condemning the arrest and torture of 43 health workers. #

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Health group assails AFP witch-hunting

Contributed to The Pamalakaya Times

Manila, Philippines- “The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is on a witch-hunt in its desperate attempt to showcase any success of Oplan Bantay Laya!”

Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD) directly linked the illegal arrest and detention of 43 doctors and health workers to the Arroyo regime’s counter-insurgency campaign, which over the years have targeted civilians rather than armed groups.

“After blatantly disregarding the most fundamental tenets of due process, the AFP now has the gall to prop up false charges against those whose basic rights they have violated,” said Dr. Geneve E. Rivera, HEAD Secretary-General.

HEAD is reacting to reports of the AFP information office that the raid conducted last Saturday in Morong, Rizal is “the biggest arrests of communist rebels in memory”. The AFP further alleges that Dr. Alexis S. Montes is a member of a special unit of the New People’s Army formed to liquidate former AFP general, Jovito Palparan.

“The lies being peddled by the AFP cannot hide the atrocities they have committed,” declared Dr. Rivera. “The so-called ‘NPA training camp’ is a family rest house of a respected medical consultant that has been used many times for parties and training of health workers and even medical students from various schools.”

“Dr. Alex Montes of Community Medicine Development Foundation (COMMED) is also a known surgeon and an elder of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP). He received his medical degree from the University of the East College of Medicine (Class 1976) and has since been active in community service such that he was the UCCP national coordinator for health services for twenty years (1986-2006)!”

According to HEAD, the mild-mannered and soft-spoken Dr. Montes is a far cry from the communist assassin that the AFP paints him to be.

Aside from Dr. Montes, the AFP also arrested Dr. Merry Mia of the Council for Health and Development (CHD). The 34-year-old doctor finished medicine at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila in 2001 and has been a community physician of the Council for Health and Development (CHD) since 2004. She is also the mother of two young boys, one of whom is only 11 months old.

The two doctors were actively involved during the relief operations after Typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng. As such, they headed the “First Responders Training for Life Support” aimed to enable communities, through health volunteers, to be able to respond in times of calamities.

“Yet instead of recognizing their contribution and sacrifice, these people are being vilified and demonized by the AFP,” added Dr. Rivera. “Military officers like Brigadier General Jorge Segovia, Colonel Aurelio Baladad, and Lieutenant Colonel Noel Detoyato are worse than criminals for the sheer number of laws they violated in conducting their illegal arrest and detention.”

“The arrogance being shown by the AFP is reflective of the utter lack of respect for basic human rights by the Arroyo regime,” concluded Dr. Rivera, “As the end of OBL II draws near, state security forces are hard-pressed to show results.”

“The only thing they have now is their crimes against the Filipino people.

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Army arrested 3 students and paraded them as captured NPAs, youth group says

By Gerry Albert Corpuz, Senior Reporter, The Pamalakaya Times

Cebu City- The chairperson of the Cebu chapter of the militant youth group ANAKBAYAN on Wednesday condemned the illegal arrest and detention of three youth activists by the Philippine Army, who later paraded them as prize trophies as members of the New People’s army operating in the Central Philippines.

In a press statement emailed to The Pamalakaya Times, Anakbayan Cebu chair Regletto Aldrich Imbong charged members of the 79th IBPA over the unlawful arrest and detantion of Karlo Cabahug, Maria Carla Alvarico ang Glenn Absin, all members of the militant youth group.

The military in Central Visayas reported the three activist students youth were caught in gunfire between the New Peoples’ Army (NPA) and elements of the 79th IBPA in Pulang Yuta, Mayabon, Zamboanguita, Negros Oriental.

But the Anakbayan official dismissed the military report as fabricated. Imbong said the three were active militant youth leaders in Cebu. He said Alvarico, is the Chairperson of the College Editors’ Guild of the Philippines; Cabahug was an active member of the Student Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy (STAND)- University of San Carlos and an active alumni of the said organization; while Absin, was an active member of the League of Filipino Students (LFS) chapter in the province.

“This act of the AFP is never new. Especially that the most hated Operational Plan Bantay Laya II (OBL II) is going to end next year, the AFP is more desperate to capture CPP-NPAs in order to meet its objective, which is to destroy the armed revolution in the Philippines by 2010,” Imbong said.

He added: ” However, OBL2 only sows more human rights violations, both in the cities and in the country sides. What the AFP is doing is targeting members and leaders of legal militant organizations, in order to discredit the integrity of militant youth organizations. This is not just a desperate act, but also a cowardly one. Instead of chasing after their real enemies, the AFP chases after innocent victims.”

Anakbayan-Cebu chapter also asserted the illegal arrest and detention and the misrepresentation of three student activists also reflects the kind of justice system we have here in the Philippines. “The AFP, instead of upholding provisions stated in our 1987 constitution, are the ones violating it. Due process of law was never given to the three youth leaders and branding them already as “members of the NPA”, a move that directly violates the principle of presuming innocence to “suspects” unless proven guilty,’ the group said.

Anakbayan-Cebu chapter said these arbitrary arrests done by the AFP is possible to every innocent Filipino, and we are encouraging all Filipinos to be vigilant and more, militant, against these cowardly and desperate moves.

The left-leaning youth group said the armed revolution to end, the AFP and the US-Arroyo government must find solutions to the very roots of our problems, especially the centuries-old problem of landlessness in the Philippines.

Anakbayan said the moves of the US-Arroyo and the AFP seemed to be a fuel to the said armed revolution. Since the AFP failed to present real NPA captives, the AFP is just trying to say something of which they are ashamed to admit: that the armed revolution in the country sides, waged by the CPP-NPA, is getting stronger, a situation they can never control.#

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Rural groups slam defense chief 10k rubber plantion project

Rural groups slam Teodoro’s disposal of 10K hectares of land for rubber plantation project

Four of the biggest rural based groups in the country– the activist peasant group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), the left-leaning fisherfolk alliance Pamalakaya, the Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA) and the Amihan peasant women federation on Wednesday questioned the move of Defense Secretary and Lakas-Kampi-CMD presidential bet Gilbert Teodoro to lease 10,000 hectares of prime agricultural lands in Bukidnon province for a rubber plantation project.

The 10,000 hectares set aside for rubber plantation is part of the 42,000 hectare military reservation in the province, The project which will cost P 72-million is in joint partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA), but the defense and the agriculture departments did not divulge the name of the investor on the rubber plantation project.

Apart from rubber, the cash crops like corn and coffee are also considered to be planted in the 10,000 hectare plantation.

“The project is highly irregular, patently illegal and grossly immoral. The AFP has no right to engage in the selling and disposal of prime agricultural lands. The military reservation should have been distributed to landless farmers and jobless farmworkers, but the AFP is keeping it as their own private property exactly similar to what warlords and big landlords are doing in Mindanao,” the groups said in a joint statement.

KMP secretary general Danilo Ramos reminded Secretary Teodoro that the prime agricultural lands do not belong the military but to the Filipino farmers and the general public, and he has no right to act like big landlord or real estate operator.

Ramos also lambasted the silence of Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Nasser Pangandaman on the AFP-DA 10,000 hectare rubber plantation deal.

“It seems to us this DND-DA project has the seal of approval of the Office of the President and the office of Mr. Pangandaman. This transaction is treated like a best kept secret among officials of the AFP, the agriculture department and the of course, the office of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and the agrarian reform department,” he said.

For his part, Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap assailed Secretary Teodoro for endorsing the anomalous rubber plantation project, adding that he and and agriculture secretary Arthur Yap acted as brokers of the highly anomalous landgrabbing deal.

“We want honest-to-goodness explanations from Teodoro and Yap. They cannot get away with this latest agrarian crime. They must be held accountable for this anti-farmer deal,” added Hicap.

The Pamalakaya leader said the sell out of 10,000 hectares of prime agricultural lands inside the military reservation in Bukidnon is a preview of what a Teodoro presidency has to offer. “We will continue to lose this country to all time landgrabbers, real estate speculators and foreign and domestic landed monopolies,” Hicap said.

Representatives of DA and AFP are set to sign a memorandum of agreement in mid-September upon completion of project documents such as project proposal and area development plan. The project is envisioned to provide livelihood to people residing close or within the military reservation.

The project according to AFP will showcase production technology for rubber and other agricultural products. The military said the project will also serve as template for the development of other military reservations such as Tumandok military reservation in Panay Island and the Fort Magsaysay Military Reservation in Laur, Nueva Ecija.

The project will tap the services of engineering brigade of the AFP based in Bukidnon to help building access roads to the plantation and put up facilities such as irrigations systems. Secretary Teodoro is optimistic the project would promote the government’s peace and development programs in Bukidnon and other parts of Mindanao.

Meanwhile, the spokespersons of Amihan peasant women federation and UMA said Congress should investigate this emerging trend in t he agrarian homefront, where the military is dispatching thousands of hectares of lands inside military reservations for business purposes.

Amihan spokesperson Zen Soriano and UMA media officer Jay Calaguing in a joint statement said lawmakers should look into the alleged real estate activities of Secretary Teodoro and other military officials encouraging the disposal of public lands inside military reservations to big agri-business corporations and other big ticket ventures.

“The auctioning of prime agricultural lands inside military reservations for business adventures negate the true essence of genuine agrarian reform and social justice in the country. This practice should be stopped and let farmers acquire these lands inside military reservations under a free land distribution scheme,” they said. #

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Militants feel de facto Martial Law

Militants feel de facto Martial Law

Despite the assurance of Malacanang that Martial Law will not be imposed and the next democratic elections will take place in 2010 as scheduled, critics of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo asserted a creeping de facto Martial Law is happening all over the country.

“Malacanang does not need to declare Martial Law. It is happening in its de facto form with the rapid militarization not only of rural areas, but also of the National Capital Region and other key cities and centers all over the country,” said Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap.

The Pamalakaya leader also said the policy of extrajudicial killing, enforced disappearance and all-out legal offensive against known leaders of underground and aboveground organizations are also proof of an onogoing de facto Martial Law in the country.

“In fact, the grounds for full-blown Martial Law are being laid down by the national security regime to stop the 2010 elections in favor of a military-civilian junta that will still be led by Arroyo and her political gangmates in Malacanang and in the military, particularly her loyal generals inside the PMA Class of 1978,” Hicap added.

The Pamalakaya agreed with observations raised by other political quarters that the Arroyo government is presenting scenarios that will frustrate the bid of the Filipino people to replace Mrs. Arroyo in 2010 through the 2010 electoral exercise, and one of them is to declare failure of elections, instead of declaring Martial Law.

Another option he said is for the government to instigate a friendly coup where the PMA class of 1978 will lead the dramatic pro-Arroyo military movement, with Mrs. Arroyo graphically sharing powers with the generals of the PMA batch.

Pamalakaya said another proof showing the existence of de facto Martial Law is the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) aggressive campaign involving covert and overt operations that aim to sabotage the electoral bid of militant party list groups in the 2010 elections.

The group was referring to an AFP report that Pamalakaya will join the party list election next year, and that its campaign will be funded from the $ 210 million raised by the New People’ss Army from collected revolutionary taxes from big business operating in guerilla zones controlled or influenced by the communist guerillas.

“The report is a product of sloppy intellgence work and not so intelligent escapades of the military. But just the same they did it on purpose, which is to sabotage the participation of progressive personalities and party lists in tne 2010 elections. It is meant to justify the continuing brutal operations and campaign of terror against militants and progressives,” said Pamalakaya.

According to document seized by the military from communist rebels during an encounter, the CPP and its front organizations will be active in the 2010 elections and they have raised $ 210 million from revolutionary taxes the communist guerillas imposed on big businesses to support its party lists and the senatorial candidates under the newly formed group Makabayan.

The same document said Pamalakaya, a party list of farmers and fishermen will participate in the 2010 elections under the party list system and will have Rafael Mariano as its no.1 nominee.

“First, please allow us to correct this misinformation being peddled by the AFP. Pamalakaya is not a party list group and definitely will not run in the 2010 elections under the party list system. To set the record straight, Pamalakaya will suppport the party list bid of Anakpawis and the three senatorial candidates of Makabayan – Satur Ocampo and Teddy Casino of Bayan Muna and Liza Maza of Gabriela in the 2010 elections,” said Pamalakaya.

“Actually we are not shocked nor surprised by this intelligence report, since the military is used to feed the public with tall tales, false reports and false alarms to justify their evil plans and at the same time enjoy the unbridled corruption of public funds,” the group said.

According to the military intelligence report based on documents seized by the military from the NPA guerillas during an encounter, the fisherfolk group Pamalakaya will run in the 2010 elections and that Anakpawis party list Rep. Rafael Mariano would be its no.1 nominee.

“Pamalakaya’s existence and advocacy are an open book to the Filipino public and even to the military establishment since it is a legal organization. The information fed by the military informer to the AFP about our plans in the 2010 elections is wrong,” the group said.

“For the information of the AFP and their not-so-intelligent persons, Pamalakaya, like in 2004 and 2007 elections, will continue to support the electoral bid of Anakpawis, which Rep. Mariano serves as president,” Pamalakaya added.

Pamalakaya said the military are again into mass production of grand stories against the left-leaning groups and party lists and their personalities to justify present and future moves that could imperil if not derail the active participation of legal organizations like Bayan Muna, Anakpawis and Gabriela party lists in the 2010 elections.

AFP intelligence personnel also said the Commnunist Party of the Philippines (CPP), its armed wing the New People’s Army and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP)have raised the equivalent of
$ 200 million as campaign funds for the candidates who will be supported by the communists in the 2010 elections.

The sources said the $200 million raised so far allegedly came from “revolutionary taxes” imposed by the CPP-NPA on politicians, businessmen as well as transportation and telecommunication firms operating throughout the country.

The captured documents also indicated that the CPP-NPA is optimistic that more funds would be raised with the 2010 elections less than a year away, the sources said.

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Pamalakaya denies AFP claim it’s running for party list in 2010 elections

Pamalakaya denies AFP claim it’s running for party list in 2010 elections

The left-leaning fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) on Thursday denied a report of the Armed Forces of the Philippines that is running in the party list election in 2010.

Dismissing the AFP claim as product of sloppy intelligence work and wild imagination, Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap accused the military of fabricating malicious stories and psy war tales to implicate his group in the Jurassic red baiting campaign of the military.

“We are not shocked or irritated by this intelligence report, since the military is used to feed the public with tall tales and politically morivated anti-Left fictions. We are just amused and at the same time puzzled why the pro-Arroyo generals and the AFP intelligence network continue to make a big issue against our group,” the Pamalakaya leader said.

According to the military intelligence report based on documents seized by the military from the NPA guerillas during an encounter, the fisherfolk group Pamalakaya will run in the 2010 elections and that Anakpawis party list Rep. Rafael Mariano would be its no.1 nominee.

“Pamalakaya’s existence and advocacy are an open book to the Filipino public and even to the military establishment since it is a legal organization. The information fed by the military informer to the AFP about our plans in the 2010 elections is wrong. The AFP paid for the wrong information and that’s their problem,” added Hicap.

“For the information of the AFP and their not-so-intelligent persons, Pamalakaya is not running in the 2010 elections. Like in 2004 and 2007 elections, Pamalakaya will continue to actively support the electoral bid of Anakpawis, which Rep. Mariano serves as president,” Hicap said.

Pamalakaya said the military are again in mass production of grand stories against the left-leaning groups and party lists and their personalities to justify present and future moves that could imperil if not derail the active participation of legal organizations like Bayan Muna, Anakpawis and Gabriela party lists in the 2010 elections.

AFP intelligence personnel also said the Commnunist Party of the Philippines (CPP), its armed wing the New People’s Army and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP)have raised the equivalent of
$ 200 million as campaign funds for the candidates who will be supported by the communists in the 2010 elections.

The sources said the $200 million raised so far allegedly came from “revolutionary taxes” imposed by the CPP-NPA on politicians, businessmen as well as transportation and telecommunication firms operating throughout the country.

The captured documents also indicated that the CPP-NPA is optimistic that more funds would be raised with the 2010 elections less than a year away, the sources said.

In particular, a large chunk of such funds would come from “fees” to be collected from the politicians who want to campaign in the “rebel-held or controlled areas” in the country’s far-flung areas, the military sources said.

“It is common knowledge, and this is not denied by the CPP-NPA, that the rebels succeed in collecting fees from national and local politicians to enable them to enter and campaign in areas where the rebels are most active,” one of the AFP sources pointed out.

About 45 million qualified voters are expected to troop to the polling precincts in the country’s first-ever fully automated polls in May 2010 to elect the successors of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Vice President Noli de Castro.

Also at stake in the coming polls are 12 senators who are to be elected nationally as well as provincial and local positions like congressmen, governors, town and city mayors and councilors.#

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