Defund the ‘anti-communist’ task force — fishers demand

Defund the ‘anti-communist’ task force — fishers demand

Manila, Philippines — The militant fishers group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA) is calling for the defunding of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), which would be allocated with a ‘whopping’ P19.1 billion on the 2021 budget.

“This is too much. Allocating billions for this rabid anti-communist watchdog in the midst of a public health crisis is literally a waste of people’s money. Instead, we are calling for reallocating or redirecting of the funding away from this useless task force to social and health services to address and mitigate the impacts of the pandemic to the poor families,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA National Chairperson said in a statement.

PAMALAKAYA said that defunding the NTF-ELCAC would prevent its ‘vilification campaign and terror tagging’ of progressive organizations and activists.

“The NTF-ELCAC composed of security officials and administration’s zealous mouthpiece is engaged in avant-garde vilification and demonization of activists that make them a target of state-sponsored attacks. We highly believe that this task force played a key role in the series of extrajudicial killings of activist leaders recently,” PAMALAKAYA’s Hicap added.

“We are calling for the absolute defunding of the NTF-ELCAC and rechannel the P19.1 billion to health services and subsidy to pandemic-stricken Filipinos,” ended Hicap. ###

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