The recent goings-on inside the walls of the regime’s bureaucracy gave the people a roller coaster ride of a week. From the rejection of Alan Peter Cayetano’s “resignation offer” and the vicious back-and-forth blows with his competition for the speakership, Lord Allan Velasco, to Cayetano’s “ouster” and Velasco’s installation as the new speaker, the Duterte administration sure did not miss a beat in keeping the masses occupied.
Yet behind all the soap-operatic drama and empty noise, the fascist and criminal gears of the Duterte regime continue to turn.
On October 12, during the peak of the sensationalized rivalry inside the House of Representative (HOR), the Senate approves the 2021 budget for the Office of the President (OP) where the questionable “Confidential Expenses” and “Intelligence Expenses” receive ₱2.25 billion each.
The next day, Velasco is officially the new Speaker of the House. In the same breath, Duterte-appointed Comelec commissioners grant Duterte Youth a certificate of proclamation despite challenges against its qualification, lending legitimization to a “youth party-list” that cannot and will never represent the true democratic interests of the youth.
Not a moment later on October 14, the Duterte administration flexed its fascism, criminality, and corruption further in three acts.
First, the Supreme Court cuts the furlough granted to Reina Mae Nasino from 3 days to only 3 hours a day for 2 days — 6 hours to see for the last time her baby that this regime ruthlessly murdered.
Second, the Senate approves on final reading the bill granting Duterte “special powers against red tape” in times of national emergency. This will allow Duterte to take full control of decisions concerning economic affairs of different offices in the government, as well as permits, allocation, and releases across different regions. Amid the Covid-19 pandemic which the Duterte regime itself declared to be a national emergency, this bodes more kickbacks for Duterte and an even easier way to consolidate his power and influence all over the country.
Lastly, the Anti-Terrorism Council approves the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) for the Anti-Terror Act of 2020 (ATA) and it is scheduled to be released by the end of the week — turning astoundingly deaf ears to the 37 petitions against the ATA, filed at the Supreme Court.
Unsurprisingly, Duterte and his stalwarts are taking advantage of the mess and confusion to possibly divert the attention away from their sinister maneuvers.
Velasco’s cat fight with Cayetano amid the budget deliberations shows how hungry they both are for the election money that they will undoubtedly get from the speakership. At the same time, the meddling of Duterte children Sara and Paolo hint at the deeper role being played by the Duterte dynasty.
Meanwhile, the budget privileges granted to Duterte and the OP in these past few days coupled with the IRR for the ATA threatens greater human rights abuses against the people. It is certain Duterte and his goons in suits and uniforms will use the budget and the terror law to wage more deadly attacks against the Filipino masses.
To parade their made-up strength, state forces’ crackdown on activists and progressives intensify as they attempt to bare their fangs against Nasino — an activist jailed for trumped up charges and false allegations.
Still, the masses will not neither be bullied nor tricked into silence and submission. As the Duterte administration continues to harass, murder, and intimidate the Filipino people, the people are fighting back in droves.
Kabataang Makabayan acknowledges the call of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to make the Duterte fascist regime bleed from a thousand cuts — to continue working towards further growing and strengthening the mass movement to go with the heightening people’s war in the countryside.
Kabataang Makabayan calls on all democratic and patriotic youth to act upon the collective anger and rage of the Filipino people. No longer should we let Duterte get away with his crimes. No longer should we swallow the pill of seeing more Filipinos die due to either state neglect or state terrorism. No longer should we endure another day of this fascist regime.
Join the New People’s Army! Oust Duterte now! Resist the fascist!