Court drops more than 600 individuals in DOJ terror list


BAGUIO CITY — A Manila court dropped more than 600 individuals the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) named in its petition to proscribe the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army as terrorist organizations. The 8-page ruling, issued on February 1 by Judge Marlo A. Magdoza-Malagar of Branch 19 of the Marila Regional Trial Court.

With DOJ’s submission of the amended petition, the court resolved that motions filed by Joanna Carino, Joan Carling, Jeannette Ribaya-Cawiding, Beverly Longid, Windel Bolinget, Sr., Elisa Tita Lubi, Rey Casambre, Sherwin De Vera, and Randall B. Echanis and 600 more names as non-parties to the petition. While the motions submitted by the nine activists to exclude them from the petition were declared as “moot and academic.”

The court also noted that “the more than 600 individuals whose names were included in the enumeration in the original petition and who were, without basis, identified as CPP-NPA members…”

Carling was UN’s 2018 Champion of the Earth; while Carino, Longid and Bolinget are Cordillera People’s Alliance leaders. Cawiding used to be Tongtongan ti Umili, a Baguio multi-sectoral group and is now the third nominee of ACT partylist. De Vera is an environmentalist and journalist.  Casambre and Echanis are NDFP peace consultants.

It can be recalled that the original DOJ petition named more than 600 individuals as alleged members of the CPP-NPA.

Down to two

Meanwhile, Malagar ordered the serving of the summons to the respondent organizations to only two of eight alleged CPP-NPA leaders named in the amended document. Notice is to be given to Jose Maria Sison and Antonio Cabanatan through publication given that the addresses of the two are unknown.

“It need not be belabored that the CPP-NPA as rebel groups have no fixed office or place of business, much less have persons taking charge of any office or place of business,” she said.

Malagar in her decision said that the petitioners failed to show proof that the six others named in the amended petition are connected to the CPP-NPA.

The other six personalities are Jorge Madlos (National Operations Command, NPA), Jaime Padilla (Tagalog Regional Party Committee), Francisco Fernandez (Secretary, Visayas Commission, Secretary, Komiteng Rehiyon Negros), Cleofe Lagapon y Sabadisto (Head, Southeast Front, Komiteng Rehiyon Negros; former Secretary Komiteng Rehiyon Negros), Leonido Nabong (Head, Military Commission, Western Mindanao Regional Party member, Member Military Commission, Mindanao Commission), Myrna Sularte (Secretary, North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee, Deputy Secretary, North Mindanao Regional Committee).

Hit list

Randy Malayao, the NDFP peace consultant shot dead on January 30 while sleeping in a bus in Aritao Nueva Vizcaya was among the more than 600 individuals DOJ listed.

It can be recalled that Karapatan and other progressive organizations equated the DOJ list to the “tokhang list” which may lead the killing those in the list when the petition was made public last year.

In August last year, human rights groups also got hold a ‘confidential memorandum’ of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to its intelligence group to submit a dossier of individuals the police labeled as New People’s Army (NPA) leaders.

Attached with the document dated May 28, 2018 is a sample report with a heading “Target Profile” on Councilor Jovencio Balweg of Malibcong, Abra.

Besides Balweg, also in the memorandum are lawyer Jose Malintas, United Nation Special Rappoteur Victoria Tauli-Corpus (Corpuz), Carling, Carino, Bolingit, Ribaya-Cawiding, Longid and De Vera. #