Press Release
September 20, 2022

Committee on National Defense & Security, Peace, Unification & Reconciliation
Public Hearing on SBN 200 (Institutionalization of NTF ELCAC) and other bills
(September 20, 2022)

Good afternoon, Mr. Chair, my esteemed colleagues, and our resource speakers na nandito ngayon. Magandang hapon po.

I would like to thank the Chairperson, Senator Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada, for setting this Committee hearing and including in the agenda two of my priority legislations, Senate Bill 200 or the "ELCAC Act" and an equally important measure, Senate Bill 896 or the "Free legal assistance to any officer or enlisted personnel of the AFP and PNP."

Mr. Chair, as a former military and police officer, ako ay naging saksi sa hirap na naranasan ng ating mga kababayan dulot ng insurhensiya sa ating bansa. Hindi lamang po ang ating mga militar at kapulisan ang naapektuhan ng mga naging paglaban natin sa mga communist-terrorist. Ang ating mga inosenteng mamamayan sa kabundukan ang syang naging biktima ng mga ideolohiyang walang kabuluhan, na ang nais lamang ay ang mapabagsak ang gobyerno. Tumagal ng ilang dekada, maraming ari-arian ang nasira at higit sa nakalulungkot sa lahat, maraming buhay ang nasawi upang sugpuin ang tila kanser sa ating soberanya.

The anti-insurgency drive of the government was taken to a whole new level when President Duterte issued Executive Order No. 70. It established the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict and implemented the Whole-of-Nation approach. The government's delivery of basic services in the countryside, through the effective coordination of the member-agencies of the NTF-ELCAC, has strengthened our internal socio-political stability. Areas formerly known to be communist-infested are now thriving and enjoying their peaceful communities.

With the accomplishments of the NTF-ELCAC, many problems in the geographical isolated and disadvantaged areas or GIDA were resolved, which greatly helped in neutralizing the CPP-NPA. With this Mr. Chair, to continue the achievements of the NTF-ELCAC and to finally achieve our goal of eradicating the communist-terrorists in the country, my proposed measure seeks to institutionalize the whole-of-nation approach.

Meanwhile, the proposed measure on AFP and PNP Free Legal Assistance Act aims to assure our military and law enforcement agents that they will always have the government's support in the performance of their duties. With the proposed bill, no AFP and PNP personnel will be left on their own to defend themselves in legal battles, after they have defended us against lawless elements.

With these measures, I am certain that the protection and security of our nation will be maintained, while those who have sworn to provide that protection and security will be safeguarded.

Thank you and good afternoon, Mr. Chair.



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