ASEANews Headline: MANILA- Palace to Reds: Sorry, no ML stage to destab

President Rodrigo Duterte will not declare martial law nationwide because this would be falling into the trap of communist rebels aimed at sparking public outrage, the Palace said Wednesday.
Palace to Reds: Sorry, no ML stage to destab
PRESIDENTIAL SALUTE. President Rodrigo Duterte, in full battle gear, acknowledges the salute of one of the military awardees during his visit to Camp Juan Ponce Samuroy in Catarman, Northern Samar on Tuesday. Malacañang Photo
The declaration came as the military identified 19 Metro Manila universities and colleges that had been infiltrated by the communists, who were recruiting students for their “Red October” plot to oust President Duterte.These included the University of the Philippines, the Polytechnic University of the Philippines; Ateneo de Manila University; De La Salle University; University of Santo Tomas; Adamson University; Far Eastern University; University of the East; San Beda, Lyceum of the Philippines University, University of Manila and Philippine Normal University.“By sowing chaos through its Red October ouster plot, the CPP [Communist Party of the Philippines] hopes that a nationwide martial law declaration would spark people’s outrage. We will therefore not fall into this trap hatched by the enemies of the State,” Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said Wednesday.“We stand by the statement of the Armed Forces of the Philippines [AFP] that the Communist Party of the Philippines is pushing the President to place the country under martial law,” he added.Roque said the President sees no grounds to declare martial law nationwide as the situation is under control.Roque’s remarks came after CPP founding chairman Jose Ma. Sison said the President and the Armed Forces have good “completely cuckoo” in claiming the CPP is “pushing” Duterte to declare martial law nationwide.“There is no Red October plot orchestrated by the CPP. The more Duterte and the AFP are trying to prove this so-called plot, the more they sound incredulous,” said Sison in a statement.Sison said AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Carlito Galvez was “idiotic” for red-tagging 10 Metro Manila universities as being involved in the plot.“The claim simply defies logic. Why should the CPP ‘push’ for martial law nationwide when it has repeatedly condemned and called for the lifting of martial law in Mindanao? Why should we ‘push’ for something which has relentlessly inflicted atrocious crimes on the people?” said Sison.“To tag people’s protests as part of a so-called plot is a threat against legitimate people’s organizations mounting these democratic mass actions. To misrepresent the broad coalition against tyranny as a mere conspiracy is to make its members open to suppression through state terrorism,” he added.He admitted that CPP calls on the public to overthrow the Duterte regime. However, he clarified that the confluence of various democratic forces will bring down the President.“Given the increasingly difficult economic conditions of the people and rising internal political conflicts within the Duterte regime, the party anticipates protests to continue to mount in the coming months,” said Sison.

The Palace had previously said it considers all information about the “Red October” plot as valid information, noting that no destabilization effort will succeed as the President enjoys overwhelming support from the military and the public.Talk of “Red October” started when Duterte claimed that communist rebels, political opposition including the Liberal Party, and the Magdalo group of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV were in a “loose conspiracy” to oust him. The groups have since denied Duterte’s claim that they were conspiring to oust him. The military on Wednesday listed 19 Metro Manila universities and colleges that the Communist Party of the Philippines has been infiltrating to recruit students for the supposed “Red October” plot to topple President Rodrigo Duterte in office.Brig. Gen. Antonio Parlade, assistant deputy chief of staff for operations said that part of the CPP’s recruitment relating to “Red October” plot was to incite students by projecting President Duterte as the new dictator through a film showing.


Parlade identified the targeted schools as the University of the Philippines; the Polytechnic University of the Philippines; Ateneo de Manila University; De La Salle University; University of Santo Tomas; Adamson University; Far Eastern University; University of the East-Caloocan; University of the East-Recto; Emilio Aguinaldo College; Eulogio Amang Rodriguez Institute of Science and Technology; San Beda; Lyceum of the Philippines University; University of Makati; Caloocan City College; University of Manila and Philippine Normal University.Paralde said the CPP has been polluting the minds of students by presenting the dark side of martial law during the dictatorship era of then late President Ferdinand Marcos.“There are film showings aabout the dark years of martial law to incide students to rebel against the government, and incite a resurgence of the First Quarter Storm experience among students while projecting President Duterte as the new Marcos,” Parlade said.Parlade said the CPP’s recruitment activities in schools for its apparent attempt to boost their ranks for an eventual overthrow, was taking place for years.“What the students don’t know is that if the CPP wins in their campaign they will implement what’s in the CPP Constitution and Programs Version 2016 published on May 2018 Article 3 Section 7- establish a “proletarian dictatorship.”He said that school officials may have no direct knowledge of the CPP’s recruitment activities except for schools that are “notorious in school activism.”“Let’s remember the communist Khmer Rouge when dictator Polpot purge millions of professionals and intellectuals in Kampuchea and installed its workers and peasants in its communist regime.“Joma Sison will be the reincarnation of Polpot, worst than Mao Tse Tung,” Parlade said.Officials of the University of Makati denied the military claims.Also on Wednesday, Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon challenged Malacañang to file charges against Liberal Party members whom Roque insisted were colluding with the communists to oust the President.“I challenge Malacañang, particularly Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque to file charges against LP members who are allegedly in cahoots with the communists to overthrow the government,” Drilon said.“In fact, I believe it is the responsibility of Malacañang to file the charges now because its credibility is at stake for issuing baseless allegations that are later denied by the military,” Drilon added.During the budget hearing in the Senate on Tuesday, Galvez was categorical when he said the LP was not involved in any ouster plot.“General Galvez’s statement in an open hearing that the LP was not involved in any attempt to oust the President should put the issue to rest,” Drilon said.“But Roque’s insistence shows that he is merely making up stories to harass the critics of the President and the political opposition,” he added. With Joel E. Zurbano

Nathaniel Mariano and Francisco Tuyay, Macon Ramos-Araneta

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