Gov't-NDF peace talk revival eyed to bring progress to countryside

By Filane Mikee Cervantes

December 1, 2023, 7:07 pm

<p>Ang Probinsyano Party-list Rep. Alfred Delos Santos <em>(Photo courtesy of Ang Probinsyano Party-List Rep. Alfred Delos Santos' FB page)</em></p>

Ang Probinsyano Party-list Rep. Alfred Delos Santos (Photo courtesy of Ang Probinsyano Party-List Rep. Alfred Delos Santos' FB page)

MANILA – Ang Probinsyano Party-list Rep. Alfred Delos Santos on Friday expressed hope that the revival of the peace talks with the National Democratic Front (NDF) would help bring progress and improve the local economy and social dynamics in the countryside.

In a statement, Delos Santos said he is confident that the people from the Bicol region would favorably receive the news of the resumption of the peace talks, especially the localities that are beneficiaries of programs and projects implemented by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).

"I welcome the conduct of exploratory peace talks between the government and the CPP-NPA-NDFP (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-NDFP)," Delos Santos said in a statement.

"This good news follows soon after President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. granted amnesty to former rebels, bodes well for the resumption of peace talks, creates goodwill, and builds confidence," he added.

He said the National Amnesty Commission, Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity, and NTF-ELCAC could visit some NTF-ELCAC barangays so the details of the amnesty and the peace talks can be explained.

Delos Santos said his office stands ready to assist in the conduct of the meetings and public assemblies.

On Tuesday, Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez Jr. announced that the Philippine government and NDF have agreed to a “principled and peaceful resolution of the armed conflict” after signing a joint statement in Oslo, Norway on Nov. 23.

Speaker Martin Romualdez said the House of Representatives would expedite the passage of resolutions concurring with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s proclamations granting amnesty to various rebel groups, including the CPP-NPA-NDF.

Romualdez and other House leaders on Wednesday filed House Concurrent Resolutions 19, 20, 21, and 22, assenting to the grant of amnesty to rebels and insurgents to encourage them to return to the fold of the law, as part of the administration’s comprehensive peace initiatives.

“It is imperative that we concur with the amnesty proclaimed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. for the general interest of Filipinos and for a lasting peace, unity, and reconciliation,” they said.

Amnesty Proclamations 403, 404, 405, and 406 cover members of the Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa ng Pilipinas/Revolutionary Proletarian Army/Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPMP-RPA-ABB), CPP-NPA-NDF, Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), respectively. (PNA)