SIPS status for NegOr spells more hunger and injustice


The Rachelle Mae Palang Command of the New People’s Army Southeast Negros Front (RMPC-NPA) called the resolution of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) to grant Negros Oriental the status of Stable Internal Peace and Security (SIPS) only a confirmation of the intent of the reactionary government to further exploit the masses in the province.

RMPC-NPA spokesperson Estrella Banagbanag in a statement on Tuesday said that the recommendation of 302nd Brigade commander BGen. Joey Escanillas was based on “nothing but deceit, as the guerrilla fronts in the province remain intact and functional so long as fascists like him exist, and the roots of the basic problems of the people are unresolved.”

Provinces declared in a state of SIPS is considered by the reactionary government as “cleared, unaffected by communist insurgents and relatively peaceful.”

“In reality, this hasty declaration is an admission of the reactionary government of its selfish interests. The PPOC is the rubber stamp to allow the influx of foreign mining, ecotourism and other businesses in the area like in Tamlang Valley, which also goes without saying that these kinds of projects will be ridden with bureaucratic corruption,” Banagbanag said.

The Tamlang Valley Sustainable Agriculture for Growth and Resiliency Project (TVAGRP) is a 1.4 billion peso project that targets the hinterlands boundaries of Santa Catalina, Sibulan, Valencia, and Siaton, which according to Banagbanag, “inevitably means aggressive land-grabbing and perpetration of human rights violations targeting peasant and indigenous communities.”

Banagbanag said that mining explorations have already started in Santa Catalina and Siaton, much to the disdain of the population as it affects their livelihood and agricultural products such as corn, coconut, and bananas.

“Along with the El Niño phenomenon, this only spells more hunger and injustice, contrary to the claims of progress promised by the reactionary government,” she stressed.

“Thus, we call on Negrosanons to continue the fight against this neoliberal offensive backed by relentless militarization. There can be no genuine peace while exploitation and oppression continue to affect the majority of the population, and only just armed struggle can bring about meaningful societal change in this rotten semi-colonial and semi-feudal ruling system,” Banagbanag ended.

SIPS status for NegOr spells more hunger and injustice