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RPM-M Statement on the 24th Anniversary of the Revolutionary Peoples’ Army

19 March 2018

It was on March 18, 1994 in honor of the martyred Moro mujahedeens in the infamous Jabiddah Massacre that the Revolutionary Peoples’ Army (RPA) was founded in the jungles of Lanao del Sur, Mindanao, Philippines. It was also a historical breaking away of the RPA led by the Revolutionary Workers’ Party-Mindanao (RWP-M) from the New People’s Army (NPA) of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

Highest respect and revolutionary salute to the comrades in the Revolutionary Armed Partisan Units, Revolutionary Reserve Forces, Revolutionary Peoples Local Militias, Ancestral Domain Defence Forces under the leadership of the Revolutionary Peoples’ Army on its 24th anniversary!

Revolutionary Salute also to our martyrs who until the last breaths of their lives remained committed to perform their politico-military tasks serving the peoples. Let us be inspired of their selfless dedication to the revolution to eliminate class and national oppressions and all kinds of oppressions to bring dignity and freedom to all the oppressed and exploited.

Comrades, we are faced today with a situation that needs more critical and most profound analysis. While the global capitalist powers are selfishly competing for dominations, we are faced with a fascist administration implementing the same neo-liberal projects of the past administrations but has created a cult where peoples have established emotional connections making the current administration acts as populist authoritarian in its domestic governance and international relations.

Supported by both Houses in Congress and strongly endorsed by the Supreme Court, Martial Law was declared and has been extended in Mindanao. On this basis overt fascist methods have been employed to all progressive and revolutionary organizations after declaring them as terrorists and worst tagging them as having some connections with drug lords especially those in the front lines of the open democratic struggles and mass movements. Martial Law has rather terrorized communities more than their experienced during those dark days of Marcos regime. Such situation is the complete opposite from its promises during presidential elections to bring peace, security and drug free country.

Numbers of deaths and bodies keep on piling and increasing all related but not limited to the anti-illegal drugs campaigns. Majority of the victims are the small peddlers and pushers from the marginalized and the poorest of the poor while on the other hand the self-confessed and even those already convicted big drug lords are cleared and set free.

Lumad, Moro and rural communities in Mindanao have been subjected to widespread and intense militarization that have caused the dislocations of hundreds of thousands, destroyed millions worth of properties, killed and maimed thousands mostly coming from the civilians including community leaders identified to openly voice out their criticisms towards the government and its anti-people program and policies..

The Duterte government has seriously failed to achieve even a modicum of change as he promised during his campaign to convince the voters and get their support resulting to his phenomenal popularity across social classes during and after the elections. In contrast to his posturing during elections, he exposed himself to accommodate the global political and economic powers and bowed allegiance to the national politico-economic elites from the time he has assumed office. The only change he has brought so far is the manner of blatant disrespect and outright disregard of the democratic institutions and human, democratic and political rights of women and the citizenry.

In his popular pronouncements, he denounces environmental destructive, exploitative and extractive projects but has done nothing to seriously and concretely stop and end all mining and logging contracts and instead invites more investors. He even puts a retired military general to the office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. This retired general has proven his loyalty to the big capitalists who have been continuously destroying what has been left with our environment and natural resources.

While he has boasted to bring to finality the peace agreement with the Moro people as led by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), it is his and those collaborationists’ concept of federalism which is the underlying motive to change the form of government using the right to self-determination struggle as a disguise.

Another manifestation of the pro elite and pro capitalist nature of the current administration is its anti-poor program and policies. Instead of ending labor contractualization and exportation and put emphasis to build sustainable local economy, he preferred to sign into law the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law that increases taxation to commodities like that of fuel and other petroleum products which will certainly cause series of increases on the prices of basic commodities. To hide this pro-rich policy, the law exempts collecting tax from peoples’ income of below 250,000 pesos annually. Majority of the population in the country today live below this standard but spends almost 80% of their daily income to food consumption. Besides the law applies only to formal sector and millions of the toiling masses belong to the informal sector to which the law cannot be applied but these people pay their tax on the consumers’ good and services

The government is certain of the intensifying discontent and resistance from frustrations and desperations of the citizenry. The administration’s armed machineries (the PNP and AFP) have already been prepared and always ready to be used as coercive and violent force to nip in the bud, neutralize and crush the social and democratic mass movements and peoples’ resistance.

Our urgent task is to defend and protect our people and communities and all other democratic forces without discrimination of political and ideological orientations from neo-liberal and fascist assaults led by the current administration.

Proactively, let us help organize and strengthen community and peoples’ defence forces while conscious of capacitating these communities and peoples’ movements in mobilizing to collectively and objectively confront the situation. Let us boldly expand to other areas and communities nationwide base on our capacity to consolidate.

Let us remain steadfast and always be grounded with the working class and all the oppressed. Let us always maintain our revolutionary politico-military discipline and get inspirations from our martyrs and fallen comrades.

We shall always overcome Comrades!

Mabuhay RPAs on its 24th Anniversary!

Workers of the World Unite!

Executive Committee of the Central Committee

Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa – Mindanao

March 15, 2018

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