CPP says Duterte ouster 'highly probable'
MANILA, Philippines – As President Rodrigo Duterte marks his second year in office on Saturday, June 30, the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) said it is "highly probable" that he won't be able to finish his 6-year term.
In a statement on Saturday, the CPP said that in less than two years, Duterte "has become isolated domestically and internationally."
"Thus, there is high probability that Duterte will not be able to complete his 6-year term of office and will be forced out of Malacañang by way of a surge in anti-fascist protest actions or some other means."
The communist group said that the President is "hated" by Filipinos "for pulling down the country's national dignity to the lowest levels amid the saber-rattling of the world military giants in the country's maritime territory and claimed areas."
They also criticized Duterte over the effects of his programs, such as the TRAIN law, the anti-illegal drug operations "Oplan Tokhang," and the "anti-tambay" initiative. The CPP said Duterte "has antagonized the broad democratic sectors in so many levels."
"With every exercise of absolute power, he invites hostility and incites more people to resist his heightening autocratic rule and plans to impose nationwide martial law and establish a fascist dictatorship," the CPP added.
This statement comes after CPP founder Jose Maria "Joma" Sison said the CPP would be better off trying to "oust" Duterte than hope that peace negotiations would lead to an agreement.
"It is relatively easier and more productive for the NDFP (National Democratic Front of the Philippines) to participate in the Oust-Duterte movement and to prepare for peace negotiations with the prospective administration that replaces the Duterte regime," he earlier said.
Duterte responded by saying that military operations against the CPP's armed wing, the New People's Army or NPA, would continue.
Oplan Kapayapaan 'doomed to fail'
In a separate statement on Saturday, the CPP also argued that the President's counterinsurgency program Oplan Kapayapaan "is doomed to fail."
They argued that militarily, Duterte "is overstretching his forces (with at least 15-20 troops in every barrio conducting so-called 'peace and development' operations) in a futile plan to lay siege on thousands of barrios across the country all at the same time."
They also said that politically, the President "is antagonizing the broad masses of peasants and minority peoples as a result of unmitigated killings, illegal arrests and detention, conscription, forcing people to 'surrender' and rampant military abuses."
"The Filipino people clamor for an end to the military occupation of rural communities and total war policy of targeting civilians. The local and international community demand respect for human rights and international humanitarian law which the AFP and PNP (Philippine National Police) are trampling on with impunity under Duterte's orders," the CPP added.
The statement said the party's central leadership as well as the NPA National Operations Command have already issued orders and directives to the NPA to "frustrate Oplan Kapayapaan." – Michael Bueza/Rappler.com