Comelec urged to cancel registration of NPA-linked party-list groups

By Benjamin Pulta

April 27, 2019, 4:03 pm

MANILA -- A petition has been filed before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) for the cancellation of the registration of a number of party-list groups identified with the Communist transnational terrorist group Communist Party of the Philippines - New People's Army (CPP-NPA).

Named in the petition, docketed as SPP 19-006 before the Comelec on April 26, were the Makabayang Koalisyon ng Mamamayan (MAKABAYAN), Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Kabataan, Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT), General Assembly Binding Women for Reforms, Integrity, Equality, Leadership, and Action (GABRIELA), with senatorial aspirant Neri Colmenares as the lone individual respondent.

Petitioner Angela O. Aguilar cited the Comelec's motu propio powers under the Republic Act 7941 or Party-List System Act’s Section 6, Paragraphs 2 and 5 as reference. 

The Party-list System Act, which was passed in 1995, allows the Comelec to cancel the registration of any group, which among others, which "advocates violence or unlawful means to seek its goal" and "violates or fails to comply with laws, rules or regulations relating to elections."

Aguilar, who is reportedly the current secretary general of Kababaihang Maralita, a non-government organization, said in her petition that she has personal knowledge that MAKABAYAN party-list groups and Colmenares are connected with the NPA, being a former CPP “kadre" and ACT member.

The CPP-NPA, founded by exiled leader Jose Maria Sison 50 years ago, was declared by the United States of America, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte as a terrorist group.

The petitioner also noted that the campaign materials of Colmenares and his cohorts were "placed outside of authorized common poster areas in public places, or in private properties, without the consent of the owner."

"Further, the materials were in violation of the Comelec Resolution No. 10488 relating to the size of campaign materials, which should be two (2) feet by three (3) feet,” the petition also cited.

Aguilar pointed out that statements, such as “Oust Duterte” that are exhibited in the tarpaulins, clearly indicate their unlawful intent to overthrow the duly constituted government and undermine the security of the country.

Earlier, Major General Antonio Parlade, Jr., AFP Deputy Chief of Staff for Civil-Military Operations, said left-leaning party-list groups at the House of Representatives cannot deny being front organizations of the CPP-NPA because Sison himself named them as his progressive allies in his video and their groups’ names are in revolutionary websites.

Parlade said these organizations conduct international solidarity missions where they publish inaccurate reports to portray a tyrant and oppressive Philippine government.

He said these groups also lobby for funds from foreign institutions, claiming that they will be used for projects to solve the fabricated issues, but will rather be used to fund terrorist activities.

“They've been fabricating reports, they've been tweaking, distorting reports so that the Philippine government will be perceived as incompetent, inefficient. They submit all these reports, false and fabricated reports, to the EU (European Union), UN (United Nations), and other governments, again for funding,” he said. (PNA)