By: Roy Bersales
On its 48th founding anniversary, the Central Committee (CC) of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) made it clear that in case the joint ceasefire deal between the Government of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) will continue, it will only take effect once the 400 political prisoners are all freed.
And if it happens the talks to root out the causes and determine the solutions to the armed conflict between the GRP and the NDFP will continue.
The CPP leadership said it is strongly supporting the peace talks that may happen between the GRP and NDFP that is expected to gain lasting peace in the country.
Meaning, the CPP will no longer pursue armed revolution against the government.
However, the CC stressed that it will not hesitate to withdraw from the peace discussion if the promises of President Rodrigo Duterte like the liberty of 400 political prisoners are not enforced.
“[H]indi maglalao’y mapupwersa ang Partido na bawiin na ang deklarasyon nito ng tigil-putukan, [it is not farfetched that the Party will be forced to withdraw its declaration of ceasefire],” CC emphasized because “[M]atapos ang ilang buwan, nakapako pa ang mga pangako ni Duterte. Nasa 400 pang mga bilanggong pulitikal ang nakakulong. Namatay kamakailan sa kulungan ang isang detenido na si Bernabe Ocasla. [After several months, Duterte’s promises did not materialize. Around 400 political prisoners remained incarcerated. Recently, political detainee Bernabe Ocasla died].”
The CPP leadership did not make it clear if the “rejectionist” party members are part of the 400 political prisoners.
Rejectionist is the term that describes CPP cadres and revolutionary activists who strongly opposed many aspects on how the CPP leads and carries out the national democratic revolution in early 1990s.
The Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) has previously raised the issue of the inclusion of revolutionaries and activists in the free all political prisoners demand to the government despite they are no longer part of Sison’s CPP.
“Gayundin, sa kabila ng pag-iral ng magkatugong kasunduan sa tigil-putukan, walang tigil sa pag-ooperasyon ang AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) sa mga baryo sa mga sona at baseng gerilya ng NPA (New Peoples’ Army). [At the same time, despite of the joint ceasefire deal (in connection with the ongoing talks between GRP and NDFP to come up with peace talks), there is continuous operations of the AFP on the barrios that are controlled by the NPAs],” the CC continued.
The CC claimed that a total of 500 barrios nationwide were placed under AFP control since joint ceasefire between the GRP and NDFP started.
It also said the Duterte administration allowed the continued implementation of the “oplan bayanihan.”
It indicated that the present administration has even improved the AFP oplan by enforcing “enhanced oplan bayanihan.”
The oplan bayanihan was the strategy and tactics of the AFP to decisively end the armed revolution of the CPP.
The CC is looking forward to Duterte’s order to free all political prisoners within 48-hours after the GRP and the NDFP approve the joint ceasefire deal that will lead to the start of peace negotiation between the two parties in January.
Duterte previously said he will only order the release of the political prisoners within 48-hours after the GRP and the NDFP affixed its signatures on a joint long-term ceasefire.
Former Catholic priest Luis Jalandoni, senior consultant for the NDFP’s peace talks with the GRP, has told the media on November 30 that Duterte should make it sure that he will enforce the deal of freeing 400 political prisoners within 48-hours after the signing of joint ceasefire deal.
The armed revolution being led by the CPP is the longest in Asia.
The CPP was put up on December 26,1968 in Tarlac headed by college instructor Jose Ma. Sison.
December 26 was selected as the schedule of the founding of the CPP because it is the birth date of Mao Tse Tung, the late leader of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), whom Sison had borrowed the guiding theories and principles in carrying out CPP’s armed revolution to establish a Marxist state in the country.
Once there is a ceasefire, the armed units of the two parties are mandated to stop attacking each other’s troops.
GRP’s armed forces are the AFP and the PNP.
NDFP has the NPA that was established on March, 1969.