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Army chief mum on party-list system abolition

BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN

Stressing that he believes in their wisdom, Army chief, Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, said Saturday that he will leave it to the legislators on what to do with the call by some people to abolish the party-list system.

The call was made after repeated accusations were hurled against the Makabayan bloc in the House of Representatives, that is being linked to the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front, by several former top NPA cadres.

“We are in a democratic world. We have to leave it to our legislators,” Sobejana said during a press conference at the 302nd Infantry Brigade headquarters in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.

While the Philippine Army is only one of the many sectors of society, Sobejana said that once a law is enacted, they will implement it.

He also admitted that the youth is the most vulnerable sector in the recruitment activities of the NPA.

Sobejana called on the youth and their parents to be very observant in joining organizations.

He reiterated that the Armed Forces of the Philippines is not engaging in Red-tagging, contrary to claims of the Makabayan bloc and their allied groups.

“It was Joma Sison who revealed to the public that they (Makabayan bloc) are part of the CPP-NPA,” he stressed.

“The Filipino people should know that,” Sobejana added.

The Makabayan bloc is accusing the AFP of using the remains of Jevilyn Cullamat as a “trophy” for propaganda purpose.

Cullamat, 22, daughter of Bayan Muna Rep. Eufemia Cullamat, who allegedly served as a medic of a unit of New People’s Army in Surigao del Sur, died in an encounter with the Army’s Special Forces troopers on Saturday. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has ordered a review of protocol in handling the bodies of rebels slain in encounters following an uproar from leftist legislators over what they said was a desecration of the corpse of Cullamat.*GPB

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