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CPP: No more cooperation with Duterte

Members of the Communist Party of the Philippines-Metro Manila march along Recto Avenue in Manila to celebrate the 2nd CPP Congress and urge the people to join the New People’s Army. EDD GUMBAN, file     
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — The Communist Party of the Philippines has virtually closed its doors to cooperation with President Rodrigo Duterte.
 
Blaming it on “the Duterte regime’s unfolding as the present US imperialism’s client state and its use of the iron fist in serving and defending the Philippines’ semi-colonial and sem-ifeudal system,” the CPP said it cannot cooperate with the Duterte administration anymore.
 
The Duterte administration, the CPP said, “is revealing itself as anti-people,” adding that "it is an anti-peasant regime" with "zero plans to implement genuine land reform and in reality is continuing land-grabbing."
The CPP said that nearly 70 farmer activists have been killed this past year. 
 
“It is anti-worker, deaf to the cries for decent and living wages,” it also said of the government, which suspended peace talks after New People's Army attacks on security forces in July.
 
 
Detail from a 2016 issue of "Ang Bayan," the official organ of the Communist Party of the Philippines.
The administration “has turned its back to the promise to end contractualization. Striking workers’ picket lines are being violently dispersed,” the underground party, which claims absolute control over the NPA throughout the country, said.
 
The party also said that Duterte took credit for the passage of a yet unfunded law to provide free tertiary education "despite the youth and students’ tireless efforts in pushing for this."
 
The CPP also called the Duterte administration anti-poor, citing an alleged lack of funding for public housing and hospitals and “the almost 12,000 people reportedly slain by policemen and hired vigilante groups.”
 
The party, which has earlier hailed Duterte for his statements against the US, said it suspects the government has liquidated a few whom the president has accused of being drug lords, "while suspicions are strong that such killings are part of syndicate wars in favor of a few groups." 
 
The CPP said "the people have no other recourse but to tread the path of militant struggle and collective action" in anticipation of "various tactics to preempt the people’s ire and thus prolong his rule."
 
The national democratic movement initially saw Duterte as an ally who would push for socio-economic reforms that would address the root causes of poverty in the Philippines. There have since been disagreements, however, on issues like extrajudicial killings, the continued detention of political prisoners and the declaration of martial law in Mindanao in May.
 
 
Detail from "Ang Bayan," the official organ of the Communist Party of the Philippines.
The president appointed three nominees of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines — the group representing the CPP and NPA in peace talks — to his Cabinet, although Judy Taguiwalo's appointment as Social Welfare secretary has since been rejected by a congressional panel.
 
Lawmakers of the Makabayan bloc, a group of national democratic party-lists, at the House of Representatives have been critical of some of Duterte's policy decisions but remain members of the House majority, which is controlled by the administration PDP Laban party. 
 
"The national democratic forces must persevere in exposing the US-Duterte regime as the present face of reactionary rule in the Philippines. Their militance must be raised to overcome both Duterte’s duplicity and fascism,” the CPP said. — Artemio Dumlao
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