The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today called on the hundreds of thousands of victims of recent tropical storm Pablo to rise up in protest against the Aquino regime’s “mediocre and slothful response to the great disaster that has caused resulted in close to a thousand deaths, total destruction of infrastructure and complete displacement of the people’s livelihood.”
Among the most devastated areas are the poor agricultural and coastal municipalities of Cateel, New Bataan, and Bagangga. Scores of other towns in Compostela Valley, Davao Oriental, Surigao del Sur, Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental, Leyte, the southern part of Negros and other provinces also suffered grave damage.
“A great majority of the victims are poor peasants, farm workers, agricultural workers, fishermen and mining workers who have been left without any source of income,” added the CPP.
“Hundreds of thousands of people have no shelter and are suffering from a lack of food supply and other basic commodities and implements. There is almost complete absence of emergency medical care. The nearest health facilities are several hours away. Many of the road systems remain unpassable.”
“The Aquino regime has acted indolently in the face of the urgency of the situation. The image of Aquino himself distributing small plastic bags of relief goods is utterly pathetic in the face of the complete destruction of the people’s livelihood.”
“People demand much much more from the Aquino regime which continues to rake in billions of pesos of taxes from large-scale mining companies who have plundered the area and caused massive destruction to the environment, leaving the people starkly vulnerable to disasters. More than ten of the biggest mining companies operate in Compostela Valley.”
“The people are utterly dismayed that the Aquino regime is more concerned with controlling looting and imposing price controls when the people are confronted with the more urgent matter of having completely lost their livelihoods, of having no shelter and no means to rebuild their lives.”
“In the face of their grave situation, the people denounce the failure of the Aquino regime to carry out immediate and large-scale action to uplift them from disaster.”
“The hundreds of thousands of victims of the recent calamity should organize and rise up in protest and collectively assert their demands for immediate relief and long-term economic upliftment.”
“The revolutionary forces, units of the New People’s Army, local Party branches and local mass organizations in the disaster areas should immeditely organize simultaneous cooperative efforts to help each other rebuild homes and resume production as well as launch mass struggles to push their demands for land reform.”
“They can carry forward the demand to put under immediate land reform the thousands of hectares of banana plantations in order to use the land to plant food and other crops beneficial to the people.”
“At the same time, the people can amplify their demand for the military to put a stop to the Oplan Bayanihan campaign of suppression that has long resulted in killings and widespread violations of human rights in the area and which have caused grave economic hardships on the people.”