Photos by KJ Dumapit/Manila Today
Member organizations of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) in Metro Manila marked the 48th year of the New People’s Army (NPA), one of the NDFP member groups and the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). The revolutionary trifecta of the CPP, NPA and NDFP represent the Filpinos waging a civil war in the Philippine countryside in the last 48 years. A ‘lightning rally’ in the intersection of Aurora Boulevard and EDSA in Cubao was held by more than 500 at around 8am in the morning, two days before the actual anniversary of the armed group.
Traffic in the busy thoroughfare halted for 30 minutes when the demonstrators filled up the intersection.
Various NDFP-member organizations, groups from sectors of workers, youth, women, health workers, scientists, and church workers among others, were present.
The demonstrators brought placards calling on the people to join the NPA.
The NPA, an armed group governed by the CPP and by its Marxist-Leninist-Maoist ideology, said it has the mission to overthrow the domination of imperialism, bureaucrat capitalism and feudalism in the country. Sison said the NPA started with more than 50 fighters and around 15 firearms.
The Ramos administration started talk about the 20,000-force of the NPA dwindling to a few thousands, in what the revolutionary groups see as a way for government to peddle the idea that the revolution lost support or prestige by overstating the numbers. CPP Founding Chairperson Jose Maria Sison belied this claim in the 1990s, saying it never did reach that number. The Ramos’ numbers are still being reported around these days.
Around 30 policemen came to the rally scene, but only after the demonstrators have left.
This was the second lightning rally of the NDFP member groups in Metro Manila this year, also in the same intersection in Cubao. The first one was held in January, calling for support for the peace talks, the third round being held in Rome that same time.