Waging revolution the best alternative to deteriorating social conditions under Gloria Arroyo regime

Fr. Santiago "Sanny" Salas
Spokesperson in Eastern Visayas
National Democratic Front of the Philippines

The National Democratic Front-Eastern Visayas today expressed distress at the increasingly dire straits of the people this 2009 under the Arroyo regime and said that waging revolution is the best way for fundamental changes. “Even in the first month of this year, the real plight of the people is glaringly clear,” said NDF-EV spokesperson Fr. Santiago Salas. “The people of Northern Samar and Eastern Samar have been wallowing for two straight months in the misery of natural calamity, compounded by the ineptitude of the Arroyo regime. Such calamities were also in the first place made possible or at the very least worsened by unsound, pro-imperialist and anti-people policies being pushed by the regime.

"The NDF-EV extends the deepest sympathies to the people of Northern and Eastern Samar who are suffering from widespread flooding. The revolutionary movement is helping those affected, especially within the scope of the people's democratic government. We go among the people to know their real conditions, help in organizing relief and rehabilitation efforts, and advise the people to struggle against the conditions that lead to and aggravate such natural calamities."

Fr. Salas added that recent pronouncements of the Arroyo government show that the people's ordeal is not over but could only turn for the worse. "Natural calamities are made worse by man-made conditions, as well as add further grief to the people who are already suffering under a government that is corrupt, subservient to foreign interests and warlike. The Arroyo government's economic policies lead to social and environmental degradation. There is the push for widespread mining and logging, as well as an agricultural program promoting plantation farming of crops for export. These have long been criticized for leading to landlessness and the ransacking of the national patrimony, as well as environmental destruction that has led to thousands of deaths in the region in various natural disasters beginning with the 1991 Ormoc flashflood."

The NDF-EV spokesperson also assailed the Arroyo government's ineptitude as shown by the marked failure to prepare as well as respond to calamities. "Dozens of storms pass the region every year. Yet the reactionary government is woefully unprepared because it is more used to robbing and abusing the people rather than helping them. Such disasters worsen the people's poverty and misery, in a region that is materially rich but where the majority of the people are landless and jobless. The peak of the government's callousness is expressed in the military's recruitment drive to increase the paramilitary CAFGU for a bloody all-out war, even while the people in wide swathes of Samar are still struggling to recover from disaster.

"The people's abject conditions further inflame them against the Arroyo regime, which they already want to end and bring to justice, as well as strengthen their desire to wage revolution and achieve genuine change."