5ID,PA supports the termination of 1989 UP-DND accord
CAMP MELCHOR F DELA CRUZ, Upi, Gamu, Isabela- The 5th Infantry Division, Philippine Army supports the termination of the 1989 University of the Philippines (UP) - Department of National Defense (DND) agreement by DND Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana.
MGen Laurence E Mina, Commander of 5ID said that the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) has long been targeting the students of UP as student-activist recruits and CPP-NPA cadres. Many casualties of armed engagements between the government forces and NPA turned out to be UP student-activist turned NPAs.
“Many bright students have lost their lives in armed encounters blinded by the crooked ideology. It is along this concerned that the security forces would want to protect the youth in their pursuit of academic exellence without curtailing their right to express their sentiments.”
MGEN MINA also stressed that the termination of the agreement doesn’t mean suppression of academic freedom. He cited the State Universities in the Area of Responsibility of 5ID that has been enjoying academic freedom even without any accord or agreement of the same context. “Education and freedom are for everyone. It is for every Filipino to freely express their dissatisfaction to the government without involving themselves in armed revolution which is a different story.”
The SAMBAYANAN- a group of former CPP-NPA cadres supported the decision of DND Secretary wherein they released a statement stating the CPP-NPA-NDF’s distortion and manipulation of advocacies. They also stated that these distortion and manipulation are schemed by the CPP-NPA-NDF using their legal covers which are actually CPP created above ground front organizations which continue to dominate the propaganda environment inside UP and other universities.
Additionally, multi-sectoral groups also expressed their support in the termination of 1989 UP-DND accord. The League of Parents of the Philippines (LPP), Liga Independencia Pilipinas (LIPI), Sulong Maralita (Youth for Peace and Development), Duterte Youth Movement, Pambansang Koalisyon ng Maralitang Taga-Lungsod (PMKL), and Movement of Women for Change and Reform (MELCHORA) said that the move will put a stop in the recruitment of students in the armed movement. According to them, this action should be regarded as an effort to protect the UP from the deceptive recruitment of the CPP-NPA.
Furthermore, 5ID Commander also pledged the commitment of the Startroopers to protect the students from CPP-NPA recruitment in partnership with the different schools and universities.
Secretary Lorenzana stands firm in his decision on the termination of the said accord scoring support from individuals and organizations advocating peace and youth welfare.