NPA acknowledges POW Ongachen’s apology, readies his release from custody

The Regional Operations Command of the New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao has acknowledged the admission of guilt and subsequent public apology of Prisoner of War Police Chief Inspector Arnold S. Ongachen, badge no. 018629. He has admitted to having made an error of judgment by keeping in his possession a sachet of shabu which they took from a “test buy” operation. He has also apologized to the masses, the government of Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and the CPP-NPA-NDF.

[Read POW Ongachen video message: NPA rehabilitates drug users]

His custodial unit has reported that preparations are underway for his safe and orderly release. Following the declaration of the unilateral ceasefire of the Central Committee of the CPP and the National Operations Command of the NPA and the reciprocation of the GPH of its own ceasefire, the custodial unit is nevertheless ready for any untoward event that may endanger POW Ongachen and the Red army’s safety.

POW Ongachen was arrested during the successful raid of the Gov. Generoso Municipal Police Station on May 29.

During his custody, POW Ongachen has declared willingness to support the NPA’s campaign against the prevalent drug trade in Gov. Generoso and Davao Oriental province. He was likewise given political education and has seen first hand how the NPA conducts its rehabilitation of drug users. He has spoken well of the masses’ support to the Red army and the people’s war and appealed to his principal, Pres. Duterte, to pursue the negotiations that will discuss the roots of the civil war.

The pending release of POW Ongachen along with another prisoner of war Michael B. Grande are a gesture of goodwill on the part of the revolutionary movement and optimism for the resumption of the peace negotiations.

While we deem the recent release of the NDFP consultants a positive development, the remaining political prisoners all over the country should be released immediately and without condition by the Duterte government in compliance with the CARHRIHL. These Red fighters, activists and civilians who were incarcerated on the ridiculous weight of trumped-up charges have suffered enough injustice under the fascist Arroyo and Aquino III regimes.

Below is the complete transcript of POW Ongachen’s public apology:

Magandang hapon po. Humihingipoako ng tawad sa masang Pilipino lalong-lalo na kay Pres. Rodrigo RoaDuterte, sa PNP organization at sa CPP-NPA-NDF sa pagkakamaliko pong paghawak ng isang sachet ng shabu na nakuha naming sa test buy nahindiakodapatanghahawaknito.

Sa dahilan pong tiwalang-tiwalapo ako sa sarili ko na hindi ko po ito gagamitin dahil hindi po ako user. At ito po ang naging dahilan kung bakit tumagal ng ganito ang pag-kustodiya sa akin. Inuulit kopo, hindi po ako user, hindi po ako pusher at lalong-lalo na po hindi po ako protektor ng droga. Sana po mapatawad po ninyo po ako. Maraming salamat po.

Good afternoon. I am apologizing to the Filipino people, especially to Pres. Rodrigo RoaDuterte, to the PNP organization and to the CPP-NPA-NDF for the mistake I have committed of keeping in my possession a sachet of shabu that we took during a test buy. I should not have been the one who kept it.

This was because I am confident that I will not use it because I am not a drug user. And this is the reason why my custody took a long time. I am reiterating that I am not a user, I am not a pusher and, most especially, I am not a protector of the drug trade. I hope you will all forgive me. Thank you very much.


On Duterte’s ultimatum over NPA use of CDX landmine

The CPP rejects the new ultimatum set by GRP President Duterte demanding an end to the NPA’s use of CDX landmines with a threat of ending peace negotiations with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

(Also see the statement “Expand use of command-detonated explosives in tactical offensives” released today by the CPP »“)

By setting such an ultimatum, after having yet to fulfill his own promise to release NDFP consultants and political prisoners, smacks of a poorly-crafted deflectionary tactic, with the aim of blaming the revolutionary forces for the repeated postponement of peace talks.

Apparently, GRP President Duterte’s mindset is becoming more and more militarized as he hops from one military camp to the next. As he surrounds himself daily with US-trained military officers and soldiers, it appears that he is more and more obsessed with ending the armed revolution through suppression. He is increasingly drawn away from the people and their urgent concerns over lack of jobs, low wages, landlessness, spiralling prices and growing desperation.

He is showing himself to be more and more cantankerous, inventing one reason after another to attack the CPP and NPA instead of finding ways to push forward peace negotiations. He is daily becoming more bellicose issuing threats of intensifying war, apparently oblivious over the failure of the AFP to stop the growth of the NPA in Mindanao and the rest of the country despite having deployed increasing number of troops against the NPA since 2011 under Oplan Bayanihan.

He issues one sensational but completely empty statement after another such as recruiting one million soldiers. He has resorted to personally bashing the revolutionaries without effect but to satisfy the base humor of his bestial AFP troops and their zealot officers.

The CPP reiterates its support for peace negotiations. It urges GRP President Duterte to fullfill his promise to release all NDFP consultants in order to have them lend their expertise in scheduled negotiations and discussions on socio-economic reforms and political and constitutional reforms.

The CPP urges the Duterte regime to fulfill its promise and immediately order the release of all 22 NDFP consultants and around 550 political prisoners by withdrawing all the trumped-up charges against them. If he does so, the GRP president will succeed in boosting a hundredfold the confidence of the revolutionary foces that he is indeed a man of honor. He would also succeed in proving that his government is indeed different from the past regime which only used peace negotiations in the vain attempt to cause the surrender of the NPA.

The CPP and all revolutionary forces are ever ready to work with the Duterte regime to actively pursue talks to resolve the roots of the armed conflict through negotiations. The CPP, however, is not one to back down from threats of war by Duterte. Waging people’s war has always been the path to strengthen the revolution and accumulate victories.