DAVAO CITY, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte said it would take another president to seal a peace accord with the communists.
During the change of command ceremony of the Philippine Army at Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City Thursday, October 5, the President said he is not inclined to resume the peace talks with the NDFP because of the string of attacks conducted by the New People’s Army against government forces.
“Eh kung para lang sa bayan, okay ‘yan [If it’s for the country, that’s okay] But the way that it is now, ayaw ko [I won’t] And maybe it would take some time to… maybe another President to do it,” Duterte said.
The NPA is the armed-wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
“We are fighting NPA (New People’s Army). At this stage, I am not ready to talk to them because it is not good for the country. If it is good for the country, I’m okay with it. But for now, I don’t like it,” Duterte pointed out.
Duterte said that he used to listen to the political opinions of exiled NDF leader Jose Maria Sison. He admitted, however, that his political ideals changed over time as he grows old.
“I used to listen to Sison. Of course, you have ideals; on what you want the world to be. But when you get older, you would know that this is not really possible, that life is really unfair,” Duterte added.
While the Duterte administration is seemingly adamant on pursuing the peace talks with the communists, the NDFP, CPP’s political arm, released recently the executive summary of its draft Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER).
The NDFP said its version of the CASER is provides “concrete” and “doable” steps towards uplifting the lives of the people from poverty, exploitation, and underdevelopment.
The 11-page executive summary raised salient points on the implementation of genuine agrarian reform to ending rural poverty, and pushed rapid development in the countryside, among others.
Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza previously said that once the peace talks resume, both Parties would have their own versions of CASER which he branded to as the “center” of the peace talks between the government and NDFP.(davaotoday.com)