To all running in the BSKE: Uphold civilian supremacy, resist the reign of military authority

This article is available in Hiligaynon

Barangay officials play a fundamental role as basic unit of the reactionary government that administers the political, socio-economic and cultural aspects of the community within their scope. They are expected to ensure the welfare of the community since they are the grassroots of society which enable them to grasp, investigate and discover the real condition of their constituency. Hence, barangay officials become the nearest refuge of the people seeking urgent resolutions to major issues they face.

But the people fret the present political situation especially that it is vulnerable to the influence of the rotting corrupt government system. In Negros Island, political posts are guaranteed to those controlled by despotic landlords, notorious anti-revolutionary bureaucrat capitalists and fascist henchmen of military and police in order to ensure the implementation of programs and projects to gain profits from natural resources and land tilled by the people.

It is the responsibility of barangay officials to attend to the needs and basic rights of the people to proper nutrition, shelter, clothing, education and health services, and to live with dignity and peacefully in a community. However, there is a clear lack, or worse an absence, of any support and services to the people despite the government’s yearly budget allocations for social needs of the people.

To attain such demands, the people strive hard through organized movement to demand their right to land, living wages and benefits, good working conditions, accessible education and health services, and other legitimate demands, but they become targets of attacks, especially peasants in the countryside, and are victims of terrorist-tagging by armed elements of the reactionary state.

The reactionary government is desperate to crush the revolutionary movement in the country which has been the haven of people aspiring for change in a rotting society. Fascist military forces even used so-called “developmental” programs and projects for the people as an excuse, but in fact this is a channel for massive corruption of the AFP/PNP/National Task Force (NTF)-Elcac. An example of this is the Barangay Development Program (BDP) and widespread forced surrenders to access E-CLIP funds. This goes on to militarization that is the source of ceaseless escalation of cases of human rights violations such as extrajudicial killing, massacre, abduction, torture, interrogation, physical assault, threat, illegal search and arrest, indiscriminate firing, and bombings in the countryside.

Aside from hunting the revolutionary movement in the countryside and the cities, the military, in connivance with lapdogs among barangay officials, are instruments of big foreign and local capitalists and landlords in implementing exploitative measures to protect infrastructure projects that pave the way for mining companies, commercial plantations and other export-oriented businesses that primarily destroy the environment and harms the livelihood of the people in the countryside.

This coming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Elections, military intervention is expected. The AFP, PNP and NTF-Elcac target the ranks of barangay leaders to push the barbaric anti-insurgency campaign and the economic interests of the ruling class.

The state also utilizes mainstream media, including mercenary media outlets and social media accounts, to repeatedly red-tag legitimate, progressive and nationalist individuals and groups that publicly expose the brutal and fascist activities of AFP and PNP butchers. The mouthpieces of the AFP, PNP and NTF-Elcac spread falsities like “extortion activities of the NPA” and “permit to campaign” during elections aiming to campaign against candidates they suspect and tag to have links to the CPP-NPA. In relation to the bloody campaign against the people, the AFP still insists that focused military operations is an effective step to push the revolutionary movement into the edge of defeat.

Carrying out their responsibilities as servant of the people, mainly those who have less and those in need, is a big challenge to newly elected barangay officials. Stand for the welfare and upliftment of the people through implementing pro-people, environment-friendly and nationalistic programs.

Barangay officials must uphold civilian supremacy and resist the reign of military authority. They must lead the way in protecting people’s rights and the organizations of farmers, workers, women, youth and other sectoral organizations from threats, harassments and military intimidation. Join the call against militarization in the countryside, and the entry of destructive mining, plantations and other economic projects that plunder the livelihood of the people.

The revolutionary government based in the countryside is willing to collaborate with genuine pro-people barangay officials. The just armed revolution launched by the exploited and oppressed masses is pivotal in achieving social justice, genuine national liberation and democracy. ###

To all running in the BSKE: Uphold civilian supremacy, resist the reign of military authority