By FIDEL V. AGCAOILI
Vice Chairperson, NDFP Negotiating Panel
Chairperson, NDFP Human Rights Committee
In view of the negative attitude of Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, Jr. to the proposed courtesy call of Chairperson Luis Jalandoni of the Negotiating Panel of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and the high risk facing Chairperson Jalandoni in going to the Philippines, the NDFP is reconsidering the visit of Chairperson Jalandoni to Manila in December.
Despite the presence of enlightened elements in the reconstituted GRP negotiating panel like Atty. Alex Padilla and Atty. Pablito Sanidad, the brutes on the GRP side do not seem to appreciate the idea of courtesy call on Noynoy as a gesture of goodwill, following precedents with Ramos, Estrada and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
They are trying to make the NDFP look like a beggar. Worst, they are capable of arresting in Manila Chairperson Jalandoni and Ms. Coni Ledesma, member of the NDFP Negotiating Panel, to show off their reactionary power and kind of law over the NDFP.
The NDFP is now contemplating to invite Atty. Padilla, GRP negotiating panel chairperson, to have one-on-one meeting in Hongkong to clarify whether the current Aquino regime accepts the validity of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) and can ensure the safe and trouble-free visit of the Jalandoni couple in Manila.
The NDFP finds it necessary to request Atty. Romeo T. Capulong as senior legal adviser of NDFP and Atty. Rachel Pastores as NDFP legal adviser on social and economic reforms to meet with Chairperson Jalandoni in Hongkong and provide legal advise to him on the implications of the trumped up charges of the GRP against him and several NDFP consultants in Leyte.
The GRP regime is showing a certain measure of unreasonableness and hostility to the NDFP by failing so far to release as good will measure the 388 political prisoners, while ordering the release of 400 military prisoners. By all indications, the Aquino regime is condoning all the human rights violations committed by the Arroyo regime and is committing its own crimes against the people, social activists and suspected revolutionaries.
It has also shown extreme slowness in moving for the resumption of the formal talks in the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations. There are continuing signs of ill will from the GRP towards the NDFP.