Response to Duterte Statements
By Jose Maria Sison, NDFP Chief Political Consultant
February 20, 2019
The statements of Duterte at the 9th anniversary of the Mindanao Development Authority in Davao City on February 19, 2019 are mixed. They carry positive and negative content as well as serious and joking expressions. But they seem to be better than entirely hostile statements.
I prefer to welcome the positive content and serious expressions about being open to peace negotiations and to let NDFP chief peace negotiator sort out Duterte’s statements with GRP chief peace negotiator DOLE Silvestre Bello III.
I cannot try to answer the mixed statements of Duterte publicly because to do so can make me appear as the one mixed up. It is best to let the negotiators meet and do their job.
Agcaoli and Bello are competent representatives of the NDFP and GRP. They are conscious of seeking a common ground by responding to the needs and demands of the people and striving to agree on social, economic and political reforms as basis for a just and lasting peace.