Carlito Badion, known for his indubitable courage, was an effective urban poor leader because he knew poverty like the palm of his hand.
Duterte publicly labeled the communists as the number one threat to national security in his speech on June 22. He also declared communists as terrorists on July 8. Are these not treated as orders from the Armed Forces of the Philippines commander-in-chief? Are these statements aiming to justify the attacks on so-called communist-terrorists?
While the Duterte administration has implemented a two-week stricter lockdown, other legitimate demands raised by medical experts have been largely ignored. It must be pointed out that many of the recommendations have been articulated by several health NGOs since day 1 but, unfortunately, these have fallen on deaf ears.
“We are outraged because the government ignores the plight of the workers and the people in this pandemic. It is more interested in suppressing freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of assembly. It is more concerned with concentrating power through the Anti-Terror Law, and if Duterte wishes so, a charter change.”
Behind his macho posture and ashen face, Duterte is afraid to the core. He is fighting against the prospect of him being made to account for all his crimes. He is doing everything to stop us, the Filipino people, from exercising our right to have better governance and better society.
“We are against terrorism but the law [against terrorism] should not violate human rights and the Philippine Constitution.”
“Si Duterte ang pinakamasahol, pinakanakamamatay at pinakapahirap na virus na nanalasa sa mamamayan.” (Duterte is the worst, most lethal, most burdensome virus to afflict the Filipino people.)
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said the trial was “a test run for the latest weapon the State can now wield to intimidate and silence not only the media but all citizens who call out government abuse.”
The very act of spreading fear reveals this administration’s fear of the power of the people.
Who have been declared “communist-terrorists” by state security forces and the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict? Practically all sectoral organizations advocating for reforms and genuine change. They did not spread terror or cause panic among the public but called on the government to act on legitimate demands of ordinary citizens.
With billions of pesos at its disposal, from the nation’s coffers and from loans incurred in our name, this government still failed to institute even the minimum standards for COVID-19 response. Of the P380-billion COVID-19 budget under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, it has spent P12.32 billion for health or merely 3.2 percent of the total COVID-19 allocation.