Netizens have urged young Filipinos not to join Anakbayan, League of Filipino Students (LFS), and other youth groups involved in activism.
MOTHER’S PAIN. Luisa Espina, mother of a minor who was believed recruited by a communist-linked group, says her daughter stopped going home during the second semester of 2017. During a Senate hearing on missing minors on Wednesday (Aug. 7, 2019), Espina said she was not losing hope that someday, she will be reunited with her daughter. (PNA file photo by Avito Dalan)
This, after Relissa Lucena, mother of a student recruited by the leftist organization Anakbayan, shared how her daughter changed and eventually left their home after joining the progressive group.
In his comment at a Philippine News Agency post on the issue on social media, netizen Gilbert Gallardo Magtibay stressed that joining such groups would not do young people any good because what these organizations do are “directionless uprisings”.
Magtibay disclosed that he was also once an activist during his college years. “Asan sila? Lahat nagtatago lang at nabubuhay na parang mga daga sa suluk-sulok ng kabundukan. Tapos ung mga lider nila na nagfi-finance, ang sasarap ng buhay sa ibang bansa at mga naka-aircon. Baka nga pinagtatawanan lang sila ng mga ‘yun (Where are they? All of them are hiding and living like rats in the corners of the mountains. Their leaders who finance them live comfortably in air-conditioned rooms in other countries. Most likely, they [leaders] are just laughing at them [members],” he added.
Meanwhile, Niña Cayetano Mars shared the story of her former classmate who died in a mountain in Isabela due to malaria after following the lead of a communist group.
“Months after graduation, we visited her wake, sobrang sakit sa nanay niya ang nangyari at nung nakita kami grabe iyak sa amin. Kasabay daw sana namin nakatapos classmate namin na yun kung hindi lang sumapi sa grupo na yan. Ilang buwan na nakalipas hinukay labi niya sa bundok na nakabalot lang sa malong (the incident deeply hurt her mom and she cried a lot when she saw us. She said she could’ve graduated with us had she not joined the group. Her remains were only wrapped in a “malong” when dug up after a few months), we saw the pictures, so her coffin was closed during her wake,” Mars said.
Stressing the importance of good communication with the young people, Richard Yap related he was blinded by an organization to “shed his blood and dedicate his life to it and to freeing the country”.
“I have opened my eyes when my father and my teacher in political science told me that if I want to help the society, the government. I have to start helping my family because family is the basic unit of the society as well as the government. So, I got out of it. Hard. Because they will not just let you go. I survived with God’s blessings,” Yap added.
Jinky Jimenez shared that she had a college professor who was a member of Anakbayan and was actively recruiting students like her.
“Binigyan kami ng two options ng logic professor namin para maipasa subject niya. One, mag-aral ng mabuti, ‘yung walang absent, walang late, pasado sa exams at quiz at may recitation. Two, ang sumali sa Anakbayan at mag-conduct ng fact-finding sa isang lugar. Mas pinili ko ‘yung una kase hindi naman ako ganoon ka-bobo para sayangin ang buhay ko na pinaghirapan ng magulang ko. (Our logic professor gave us two options to pass his subject. One, study hard, no absences, tardiness, pass the exams, quizzes and recitation. Two, join Anakbayan and conduct fact-finding in a certain place. I chose the first option because I’m not that stupid to waste my life for which my parents suffered a lot). And a year later, he [the professor] was shot dead during his class,” Jimenez said.
In response to Jimenez, netizen JoJo Coronado suggested stopping members of LFS, Anakbayan, Anakpawis, and other groups supporting the National People’s Army, from recruiting students.
Jowell Kip Conales, an alumnus of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), said LFS targets college freshmen because they easily say yes to invitations and discussions.
“Nagtuturo sila ng Karl Max and Friedrich Engels then nung nasa listahan na ako na magpunta sa Mindoro sumibat ako. One week akong absent kasi hinahanap ako…makulit kasi sila aabangan sa klase nag-aantay sila sa labas pagkatapos ng subject mo, kukunin nila weekly schedule mo (They teach Karl Max and Friedrich Engels then I left when they included me in the list of those going to Mindoro. I went absent for a week because they were hunting me…they will wait for you after class and they will get your weekly schedule),” he added.
Another PUP alumnus, a certain Argel, said LFS members seemed to have been brainwashed by the NPA because “they are all angry at military men who they label as the true rebels”.
“Ewan ko ba sa presidente ng PUP kung bakit pinapayagan until now ang ganyang kalakaran, sobrang laya wala nang disiplina, nandadamay na ng pamilya…Feeling nila sila na si Jose Rizal at Andres Bonifacio kaya pati magulang binabastos (I don’t know why PUP’s president allows such system until now, there’s too much freedom that there’s no longer discipline, families already suffer…They already feel like they’re Jose Rizal and Andres Bonifacio so they disrespect their parents,” Argel added.
Condemning Anakbayan for causing young people to rebel against their parents, Allan Kalan urged his fellow youth to love and obey their parents even just for the sacrifices they have made to raise them up.
“Iyong mga kaibigan nyo or mga kikilala ninyo hindi ‘yan sasalo ng bala para sa inyo pag nasa bundok na kayo. Pero ‘yung magulang ninyo, hindi yan magdadalawang-isip ibigay ang buhay nila kapalit ang buhay ninyo (Your friends or acquaintances will not catch the bullet targeted at you when you’re in the mountains. But your parents won’t think twice to risk their own lives for your sake),” Kalan added.
Lauding the government’s drive against communism, Jeh Sabando said it is good that the activities of communists and terrorists, who are masking themselves through the party-list system, are now being exposed.
“Siguro maraming pobreng ina at ama ang hindi man lang makapagsumbong sa takot (Maybe, many poor mothers and fathers are unable to inform the authorities because of fear),” Sabando added.
Last Wednesday, PUP president Emanuel de Guzman assured that professors who require their students to attend protest activities will face charges.
“If proven, administrative cases will be filed against them. They will no longer be qualified to teach in PUP,” De Guzman said in an interview with Philippine News Agency (PNA) on the sidelines of the Senate hearing on missing minors who have been allegedly recruited by organizations with links to the communist movement.
On Sunday, Department of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año assured the parents whose children were recruited by leftist organizations that the government will help them find their children.
He warned parents against the active recruitment of leftist organizations in schools and universities nationwide and urged them to be “involved in guarding their children since these communist-terrorist groups have little to no regard for the lives of the youth”. (Ma. Teresa Montemayor, PNA)