CPP founding chairman Joma Sison
By Junex Doronio
STILL PERPLEXED WHY THE MAKABAYAN BLOC congressmen continue to condone the New People’s Army’s protracted armed struggle to overthrow the government, retired Philippine National Police (PNP) chief and now Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson is considering to invite Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chairman Jose Ma. Sison to take part in the next Senate hearing on red-tagging.
“We will have to look into it first since he is out of the Philippines’ jurisdiction and his testimony may not have any probative value even in a legislative inquiry,” Lacson, chairman of the Senate defense committee, said.
He noted that in Tuesday’s hearing, red-tagging originally came from Sison, based on a 1987 video shown by the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency where Sison made a “roll call” of organizations allied with him.
“So ang original red-tagger is Joma Sison himself,” Lacson quipped.
The hard-hitting senator from Cavite admitted that he cannot understand the logic of the so-called progressive solons of the Makabayan bloc in the House of Representatives why they cannot denounce the atrocities of the NPA.
“Will somebody help explain the logic of some members of Congress publicly condoning the New People’s Army that has been waging a protracted armed guerrilla warfare against the same government that employs them?” Lacson later said in a post on his Twitter account Tuesday evening in apparent exasperation.
After skipping the first hearing earlier this month, Neri Colmenares, Bayan Muna chair; Carlos Zarate, Bayan Muna representative in the House; Sarah Elago, Kabataan party-list representative and Teddy Casino, former Bayan Muna representative finally attended the Senate hearing on red-tagging last Tuesday. They took turns in denying that their party-list groups are fronts of the CPP.
Lacson then asked Casiño pointblank, if he would consider the NPA an enemy but Casiño answered “no”.
“Just like we don’t consider the members of the MILF or the MNLF as enemies, we also do not consider the members of the CPP-NPA-NDF as enemies,” Casiño replied.
But this cannot be accepted by Lacson.
“You belong to government. The government is your employer. You are a member of the same government the NPAs are planning to overthrow through armed struggle,” Lacson stressed later in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel.
He also recalled the case of former Brig. Gen. Victor Corpus, who defected to the NPA when they were still in the Philippine Military Academy.
“Immediately when he defected, we considered him as an enemy because he became an enemy of the state. But when Corpus returned to the fold of the law, we no longer considered him an enemy,” Lacson said.