MANILA – The National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) on Monday criticized presidential candidate and Vice President Leni Robredo for lying about a deal with members of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).
NTF-ELCAC Spokesperson for Sectoral Concerns and Communications Undersecretary Lorraine Marie Badoy made this remark after Robredo on Sunday denied rumors linking her and her volunteers to the CPP-NPA-NDF.
Badoy said Robredo’s camp should stop denying the deal, noting that CPP founder, Jose Maria “Joma” Sison even tweeted his official endorsement of her candidacy.
“VP Leni Robredo’s camp should stop insulting the intelligence of the Filipino people by pretending they have not made a pact with the devil, the communist terrorist CPP-NPA-NDF,” she said in a statement.
She said the Makabayan Bloc, which she described as “urban operatives of the CPP-NPA-NDF”, also endorsed Robredo.
“This endorsement of Leni Robredo is an endorsement of the Central Committee of the CPP-NPA-NDF, an organization that has been designated a terrorist organization by the Anti-Terrorism Council and that has also been declared a terrorist organization by the Philippines, US, UK, New Zealand, EU, Australia and Canada,” she added.
Badoy said Robredo has formed a “tactical alliance” with communist terrorists that is “mutually beneficial to the both of them.”
“And anything that benefits this terrorist organization means more pain and suffering for the Filipino people,” she said.
Citing Robredo’s March 4 campaign sortie in Cavite, Badoy said the Vice President even shared the stage with communist “operatives.”
She pointed out that Robredo took back her calls for the abolition of the NTF-ELCAC and repeatedly used the term “redtagging” to “silence” those who speak the truth about communist fronts.
Badoy said Robredo also promised to resume what she described as “bogus” peace talks should she be elected as president.
“We are sorry to tell those who have given their precious trust to the VP that she has betrayed us all,” Badoy said.
She said the only way Robredo could “redeem” herself is to publicly denounce the CPP-NPA-NDF and all the atrocities they have committed and work with the NTF-ELCAC.
She said Robredo should also ask the Makabayan Bloc to do the same.
“We therefore await the Vice President’s public condemnation of the CPP-NPA-NDF and her open invitation for the KABAG to do the same. Otherwise, we will rightfully conclude that she is not worthy of our trust and that she values the few votes the CPP-NPA-NDF claims they can give her far more than our lives and the lives of our children and the destiny of our country,” she said.
In an interview over SMNI on Saturday, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said he received an intelligence report about alleged “groupings” of some members of the opposition and communist rebels to disrupt the May 2022 polls.
Robredo's spokesperson, Barry Gutierrez, earlier said the "blatant" and "persistent" red-tagging of their camp is a "new low", noting that rival candidates were trying to dampen the energy of the Vice President's campaign.
CPP spokesperson Marco Valbuena also denied talking with Robredo or other presidential candidates about the formation of a coalition government.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
The Anti-Terrorism Council also formally designated the National Democratic Front as a terrorist organization on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and inseparable part” of the CPP-NPA that was created in April 1973. (With reports from Lade Kabagani/PNA)