Saturday, July 30, 2016
Choose Peace Not Conflict
Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros today reiterated her call to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and it's armed wing, the New People's Army (NPA), to reciprocate the gesture of the Duterte government in declaring a unilateral ceasefire.
The senator issued the statement after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has given the communist guerrillas until 5 p.m. Saturday to issue their own declaration.
Hontiveros welcomed Duterte's declaration of a unilateral ceasefire with the CPP-NPA. "At a time when it is easier to wage war than seek peace, President Duterte's decision is a bold and unprecedented move. I hope the government's ceasefire will be duly recognized and implemented by all state security forces."
The neophyte senator, who was also part of the government panel for peace talks with the National Democratic Front (NDF) when Jose Maria Sison was the chief consultant of the group, challenged the CPP-NPA to immediately and unconditionally declare a ceasefire. She also condemned the NPA attacks in Davao del Norte, which came in the wake of the government’s declared ceasefire.
"The armed communist left has the opportunity to show to the public that it is capable of peace. If the CPP-NPA is really sincere in ending this armed conflict, it must renounce its anti-people military actions, silence its guns and choose the path of peace. It is the more courageous and revolutionary thing to do," Hontiveros said.
Hontiveros, who hails from the democratic left Akbayan, is the ideological opposite of the CPP-NPA.
In 2005, the CPP released a hit list containing the names of individuals deemed as “counter-revolutionaries” and “class enemies.” The list includes Akbayan leaders such former Commission on Human Rights Chairperson Loretta Ann Rosales, Nathan Quimpo and Sixto Carlos.
The hit list was issued after a series of assassinations by the NPA of personalities branded by the CPP as "enemies of the people."