(MANILA BULLETIN) Senator Jinggoy Estrada on Monday, December 19 said he is confident that the death of Communist Party of the Philippines-New Peoples Army (CPP-NPA) founding chairman Jose Maria Sison will further weaken the armed rebel group.
“It may not be the end for the CPP-NPA which has been waging a guerilla war since 1969 to overthrow the government but the death of its founding chair may further weaken it,” Estrada said in a statement.
“The past few years showed that the insurgency problem, which spanned over five decades and is one of the world’s longest ongoing armed conflicts, has been diminishing due to significant improvements in peace and development in the countryside,” Estrada noted.
Thus, Estrada said the CPP-NPA’s efforts to establish a communist state have been nil.
“While they continue to be a threat that must be eliminated, their strength in numbers has been on a continuous decline,” he pointed out.
Given this development, Estrada said the government must take this opportunity to intensify the collaboration of different agencies, stakeholders, local government units (LGUs), and “even the general public in crushing the communist idea that drives the armed struggle.”
“Responsibilidad ng bawat isa sa atin na pangalagaan ang kinabukasan ng mga susunod na henerasyon at masiguro na matamo na natin ang mailap na pangmatagalang kapayapaan (Each of us has the responsibility to safeguard the future of the next generation and ensure that we achieve the elusive lasting peace,” the senator said.
Sison, who lived in a self-imposed exile in the Netherlands, died last Friday, December 17 at the age of 83.