NATIONAL Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. maintained there is collaboration between Makabayan solons and Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).
Attending for the second time the Senate hearing on the issue of red tagging, Esperon, the vice chairman of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), has presented more witnesses who started out as activists and ended up with the NPA and eventually high positions in the CPP.
According to Esperon, the statements of the witnesses clearly showed that Makabayan is involved in the recruitment of members for the NPA.
“They are living proof of the indisputable ties between the legal fronts and the NPA. Therefore, the Makabayan bloc cannot deny their complicity in the armed struggle,” Esperon said in a statement.
“You cannot deny responsibility for the recruitment of our youth by the NPA. It is your front organizations that (mold) these young minds in their early years in the League of Filipino students (LFS) and Kabataan party-list,” he added.
The NTF-ELCAC had earlier presented documentary evidence which showed the link between CPP-NPA and allied legal fronts in its goals of attaining a mass revolutionary movement.
“The most glaring evidence of their association to the CPP-NPA-NDF is in the CPP constitution which lays out the objectives of the revolutionary struggle. The CPP constitution espouses armed struggle as the main form of struggle while the legal democratic movement is the secondary but indispensable form of struggle,” the statement added.
Just recently, the officials of the NTF-ELCAC and Makabayan solons faced off in the Senate hearing on the issue of red-tagging. Militant groups like Bayan Muna, Kabataan and Gabriela have deplored the alleged red-tagging activities of the NTF-ELCAC.
Esperon denied the red-tagging accusation but said the security group is only stating the facts about the NPA as enemy of the state and the Makabayan as legal front of the CPP.
“I shared the disbelief in Sen Lacson’s words as he said he could not reconcile the fact the Makabayan bloc, as elected government officials and paid for by taxpayers, could not denounce the armed rebellion and killings done by the NPA,” Esperson said.
“We in the security sector consider those who have joined the NPA as an enemy of the state,” he added.
During the Senate hearing, former Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casino stressed that they do not consider their former-members-turned NPA members as enemies since they still recognize their social advocacies.
Esperon assailed Casino and reminded the Makabayan solons that as public officials their obligation is to promote and preserve the Constitutional rights and freedom of Filipinos.
The official added that the security sector is duty-bound to make public the true nature of these front organizations in order to educate the public, especially the youth.
Responding to Casino, Esperon reiterated that he has a strong case against the CPP-NPA-NDF in light of the overwhelming evidence.