The National Task Forced to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) has once again released unsubstantiated claims of universities being a breeding ground for the CPP-NPA. According to their statement, the above-mentioned department expressed its full support on Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade’s asseveration about schools being the target of the CPP-NPA for its recruitment. They stated that the alleged testimonies from students and former rebels show that the said insurgent group’s prey is the students or children.

After releasing the list of schools or universities that they claimed to be the seedbed of CPP-NPA members, they also released a list of progressive groups whom they have also asserted as the front of the aforementioned “terrorist organization.” They also refuted that what they are doing is not red-tagging because red-tagging is a myth created by the CPP-NPA to protect their so-called fronts.

The College Editors Guild of the Philippines vehemently condemns the petty actions done by these supposed to be public servants because this is just one out of many manifestations of the misplaced priorities of the Duterte government. As they try to defend their baseless claims against educational institutions and progressive youth and deny the existence of red-tagging, the Filipino youth and other progressive groups have been exerting major efforts in helping the people in various ways.

If they really want to fight for our children, then they ought to know that what they are doing is pure clownery. We would like to remind them that the criticisms made by progressive groups are tools for them to provide better service for the Filipinos. It is a tool to help children grow in a safe and secure environment and it should not be treated with hostility. Statements from activists and even ordinary people do not contain words that encourage the public from causing havoc, it contains messages about being critical and demanding accountability and responsibility from public officials. Silencing critics and activists using red-tagging is not a way to have a better society.

#NoToRedTagging

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