The Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 serves as an effective tool of the government in dismantling communist terrorist groups (CTGs), President Rodrigo Duterte said.
“It would be easier now really to just… ‘Yung [law against] terrorism, it’s actually a vehicle for fighting the rebels who are out to destroy the government,” Duterte told Pastor Apollo Quiboloy in a prerecorded interview aired over SMNI on Friday.
Duterte said communist insurgency had thrived for over 50 years because the country, prior to the signing of Republic Act (RA) 11479, has ineffective laws against terrorism.
He said the anti-terror law is a “desperate measure” to stop communism in the country.
“We are the only country actually fighting insurgency dito sa (here in) Asia. Tayo na lang (It’s just our country). For 53 years, wala talaga because our legal system sa atin, ‘yun nga, ‘yung nasa terrorism law, nakalagay diyan ‘yung mga bagay-bagay na (because of our legal system and the provisions under our previous terrorism law) make it hard for us really to dismantle them,” he said.
Under RA 11479, those who are part of the planning and training for the commission of terrorism will face life imprisonment sans the benefit of parole and the benefits provided under RA 10592 or the Good Conduct Time Allowance Law.
The anti-terror law also warns that any person who threatens to commit terror acts or proposes to commit or join terror acts will face a 12-year imprisonment.
Duterte lamented that guerilla fronts of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), “bereft of any ideology,” keep on waging a war against the government while its leaders live a “comfortable life” at the expense of deceived guerillas.
“Itong mga regulars nila sa main guerilla units, kayong mga sundalo na NPA, nagpapakamatay kayo para sa isang grupo na humawak ng ideolohiya noon at hanggang ngayon pinapaniwalaan pa ninyo. Anong nakuha mo (The regulars of main guerilla units, the NPA rebels, are sacrificing their lives for a group without an ideology yet they still trust them. What do they get from it)?” he said.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist group by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
The Anti-Terrorism Council also formally designated the NDF as a terrorist organization on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and inseparable part” of the CPP-NPA that was created in April 1973.
Source: Philippines News Agency