DAVAO CITY—Makabayan (Makabayang Koalisyon ng Mamamayan) condemns the systematic red scare and witch-hunting campaign against progressive candidates as the run-up towards the May 2010 elections heats up. The militant group also confirmed that the vehicle with plate number PJF 185, which was used in distributing smear campaign against Makabayan and their candidates, is registered under the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (Nica) in Quezon City.
Last week, Makabayan supporters reported that a gray car bearing those plates was seen distributing anti-Satur Ocampo, Liza Maza, Joel Virador and Leah Librado materials all over the city.
Ariel Casilao, Makabayan regional spokesperson, said reliable source from the Land Transportation Office (LTO) identified the said vehicle.
”The corrupt and fascist regime of Arroyo is rehashing the old McCarthyist witch-hunting that was the practice during the Cold War of the 50’s-60’s in the US, as well as the failed martial law tactics of the 70’s-80’s, to implicate the progressive groups and candidates with the CPP (Communist Party of the Philippines), the NPA (New Peoples’ Army) and the NDF (National Democratic Front),” Casilao said in a picket rally and a press conference. He added that the actions were “desperate” and did not respond to present realities.
Casilao added that the Arroyo regime tried to use red-scare but failed when progressive Bayan Muna Partylist first ran in 2001, where Bayan Muna got more than a million votes; in 2004 where Bayan Muna, Gabriela and Anakpawis secured more than two million votes; and in 2007 where the progressive partylist block secured addional seats plus one from the Kabataan partylist, securing more than four million votes.
“The Arroyo regime tried but failed to suppress the progressive vote by employing terror tactics in bailiwicks in Central Luzon, Southern Tagalog, Bicol region, and in Mindanao. This is the same region responsible for the extra-judicial killing of thousands of supporters, leaders and campaigners of Bayan Muna and other progressive partylist group,” Casilao said.
Makabayan candidates Liza Maza and Satur Ocampo and party-lists Gabriela, Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Kabataan, ACT and Katribu have been experiencing massive vilification and hate campaigns all over the country. Documented cases point to military and para-military forces, government and “civil society” groups – as perpetrators.
“Such is a desperate move of Arroyo regime. As history has taught us, only the big landlords and compradors can benefit from a hyped anti-communist hysteria. The people need genuine change and the only way for that to happen is to end Arroyo and foil state terrorism” Casilao said.
Joel Virador, former Bayan Muna representative and now a candidate of Hugpong sa Tawong Lunsod-Makabayan for district one councilor, meanwhile, verified that Bayan Muna has filed a case at the Comelec and the Ombudsman against responsible military personnel and officials. Several cases of violation of the Omnibus Election Code will also be filed against elements of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in various places nationwide.