The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) today said that 84 percent of the 1,715 provinces, cities, and municipalities nationwide have passed resolutions through their local legislative bodies condemning the atrocities of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) and declaring them persona non grata in their respective localities.
In a virtual press conference organized by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) Media Bureau, DILG Undersecretary and NTF-ELCAC Spokesperson Jonathan E. Malaya said that a total of 1,436 LGUs have passed resolutions condemning the atrocities of CTGs and declared them persona non grata, while the remaining 279 LGUs are in various stages of deliberation in their respective provincial, city, and municipal councils.
“The resolutions of LGUs are solid proof of the condemnation of the CTGs and the resolutions belie the false claims of the Communist terrorists that they are supported by the people,” he said.
“Isa itong mensahe sa mga CTGs na tigilan n’yo na ang inyong pagkukunwaring kayo’y para sa bayan. Hindi totoong kayo ang boses ng mamamayan. Hindi totoong gusto o kailangan kayo ng mamamayan,” he added.
Among the 17 regions, six regions have already achieved 100% percent declaration of persona non grata against the CPP-NPA-NDF, namely Central Luzon, MIMAROPA, Central Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, SOCCSKSARGEN, and the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).
Meanwhile, four regions are nearing absolute declaration of persona non grata, with Ilocos Region at 99 percent declaration, Cagayan Valley at 98 percent, CALABARZON at 94 percent, and Northern Mindanao at 95 percent.
In the National Capital Region (NCR), nine cities out of the 16 cities and one municipality have passed resolutions condemning the atrocities of CTGs and declaring CPP-NPA-NDF as persona non grata, namely the cities of Caloocan, Las Piñas, Mandaluyong, Muntinlupa, Navotas, Pasig, Quezon, San Juan, and Valenzuela.
Other ELCAC-related efforts
According to Malaya, aside from the DILG’s close coordination with LGUs for ELCAC, the Department continues to ensure that genuine peace is achieved in communities through various programs such as the Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP), Capacitating Urban Communities for Peace and Development (CUCPD), Barangay Development Program (BDP), and the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP).
In the same press conference, Malaya revealed that under the RCSP, 1,331 barangays out of 1,394 target barangays have been visited and undergoing the implementation of various government projects and programs. The top priority regions for the implementation of the RCSP are Regions VI, X, XI, XII, and CARAGA.
He said that 44 target highly urbanized cities and cities are undertaking activities related to the CUCPD, with 26 of them have started to utilize the convergence platform of the CUCPD framework for their advocacy campaigns in urban areas.
Meanwhile, under the BDP, a total of P12.3-billion or 75 percent of the total budget of P16.44-billion for the 822 BDP recipients have been released to recipient LGUs as of May 23, 2021, accounting for a total of 1,756 projects whose allocations were approved by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
Moreover, Malaya explains that under the ECLIP, a total of 6,418 former rebels (FRs) and Militia ng Bayan have been provided with financial assistance as of May 21, 2021. He said that 3,965 of these are regular NPAs fighters while 2,453 are Militia ng Bayan.
He also noted that the financial assistance of P5-million was extended to each 42 LGU beneficiary provinces and highly urbanized cities (HUCs) for the construction of halfway houses or facilities to serve as temporary shelters for surrendering FRs and as venues in the conduct of rehabilitation or healing sessions and education or skills training activities.
Following calls from several senators and congressmen to defund the NTF-ELCAC, Malaya expressed gratitude to national and local officials who expressed support to the NTF-ELCAC and its programs, such as Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Governor Alexander Pimentel of Surigao del Sur, and Leyte Representative Lucy Torres-Gomez.
“Sila po ang nagbibigay lakas sa amin sa NTF-ELCAC para mas magampanan pa po ang aming tungkulin na wakasan ang ating communist armed conflict,” he said.
Other personalities and provincial governors also expressed their support to the NTF-ELCAC and the BDP, including Pastor Apollo Quiboloy of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, Governor Tyrone Uy of the Province of Davao de Oro, Governor Ben Evardone of the Province of Eastern Samar, Governor Dale Cordova of the Province of Agusan del Sur, Governor Francisco Ortega of the Province of La Union, and Governor Nancy Catamco of the Province of Cotabato.