DAVAO CITY – National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) Chairperson Louie Jalandoni described Davao City Mayor and PDP-Laban presidential bet Rodrigo Duterte as the most willing to resume peace talks and address the roots of the armed conflict.
Jalandoni made the statements last Monday, February 22 during the Mindanao book launching of Jose Maria Sison’s Crisis Generates Resistance and Ina Alleco Silverio’s Louie Jalandoni: Revolutionary held at the University of the Philippines Mindanao Department of Social Sciences.
“Pinaka-forward siguro sa pag-present ng kanyang position tungkol sa peace negotiations ay si Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, na nagsabi pa nga na willing siyang magkaroon ng coalition government with the NDFP at nag announce na willing siya na magbigay ng tatlong cabinet posts sa NDFP (Mayor Rodrigo Duterte seems the most forward among the presidential candidates to present his position on the peace negotiations. He even said he is willing to have a coalition government with the NDFP and announced that he will give three cabinet posts to NDFP if he becomes president),” Jalandoni said via Skype when asked who among the presidential candidates was the most open to the resumption of peace talks.
The three cabinet positions mentioned were for the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), and the Department of Environment and National Resources (DENR).
Duterte, a self-professed “socialist” and “leftist,” allowed thousands of mourners of the late rebel leader, Leoncio “Ka Parago” Pitao, to hold a street funeral march last July 10, 2015. The Davao City mayor has also regularly mediated for the release of the New People’s Army’s prisoners of war.
When asked about the mayor’s purported alliance between Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos and his recent statements against labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), Jalandoni stressed that the people must look at all aspects of Duterte, both in his actions and his words.
“Maraming aspects kasi si Mayor Duterte … ‘yung tulong niya kay Ka Parago at allowing tens of thousands of people to march through Davao and he goes to the [wake], or he support[ed] right away the victims of earthquake in Bohol, nagpadala ng support … (He has many aspects… he helped Ka Parago, allowing tens of thousands of people to march through Davao and attended his wake. He supported the victims of the earthquake in Bohol)” he said.
“Maraming ginagawa sa practice si Mayor Duterte na very positive at nakikita ‘yon ng kilusan. Meron din siyang mga sinabi na nag object very strongly yung KMU o yung mga magsasaka … ‘yung iba against sa business islands o yung sa special economic zones. Pero meron ‘din siyang sinabi na para siya sa steel industry, which would be for national industrialization (He has a number of practices that are very positive and the movement can see that. He also made strong statements objecting against KMU or the farmers… some opposes his proposal to have business islands or the special economic zones. But he also said he is supportive to put up a steel industry in the country, which would be for national industrialization),” he added.
Duterte earlier this month drew flak from the labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno when he told the labor front to stop their militant activities for at least ten years if he is elected president, or else he will “kill” them in a proclamation rally in Tondo.
Duterte’s camp has since expressed regret over the statement and said that it was taken out of context.
While other presidential candidates such as Vice President Jejomar Binay, and Senator Grace Poe have expressed their willingness to resume peace talks, Liberal Party (LP) Standard Bearer and former Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Mar Roxas is not interested in the idea, according to Jalandoni.
“Mukhang overconfident siya, at ang grupo niya na naroon yung government resources at kung ano pa … perhaps control sa automated electronic system ng voting ay parang walang interes dahil ang so called Daang Matuwid ni Noynoy ang itutuloy (He seems overconfident and his group which has all the government resources… or the control on the automated electronic system of voting has no interest because they will continue President Aquino’s ‘straight path’),” he said about Roxas.
Sison’s book, Crisis Generates Resistance, was launched in Manila last November 30. It was the first volume of a new series of books published by the International Network for Philippine Studies (INPS) under the general title, Peoples’ Struggles against Oppression and Exploitation, which covers the period from 2009 to 2015.
Meanwhile, Silverio’s Louie Jalandoni: Revolutionary, An Illustrated Biography was launched last April 25, 2015 at the University of the Philippines in Diliman. (davaotoday.com)