By SHERWIN DE VERA
BAGUIO CITY — The chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) on Monday, July 16, called the localized negotiations promoted by the Duterte government as “absurd and stupid.” Jose Maria Sison, also recognized as the founding chairperson of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), elaborated five reasons why.
Addressing President Rodrigo Duterete and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Sison pointed out that localized peace talks cannot address the “roots of armed conflict with social, economic and political reforms of national dimensions” as the foremost reason.
Second, he noted the government’s effort to “divide and disintegrate” the armed resistance led by the CPP though the initiative is a vain effort. Adding that central and regional leadership of the CPP, NDFP and New People’s Army have already condemned the idea of local talks as the third reason.
Fourth reason, according to Sison, is the people and revolutionaries’ awareness that localized peace talks are “zarzuelas” perpetuated by the military and members of the local peace and order council “for psywar purposes and pocketing of funds for fake surrenders.”
Lastly, Sison, urged Duterte and Lorenzana to admit that both “have all along been sabotaging” the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations, and the push for local talks are reflection of the duo’s frustration over their failure “to make the NDFP capitulate.”
Cordillera rebel leader, Simon “Ka Filiw” Naogsan, announced last week that revolutionary forces in the region will thwart efforts to divide their ranks through local peace negotiations. # Sherwin De Vera