Hugo's arrest is another stumbling block to the peace process

Maria Roja Banua
NDFP Bicol
January 29, 2015

The National Democratic Front- Bicol (NDF-Bicol) denounces the arrest last January 27 of NDFP peace consultant Reynaldo Hugo in Cabuyao, Laguna. Hugo's arrest, effected by joint forces of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 4 (CIDG) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, violates the NDFP-GPH Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG).

Hugo had been issued NDFP Document of Identification Number ND978239 under the name Orgel Dimaaano. He was issued a corresponding Letter of Acknowledgment signed by then GRP Negotiating Panel Chairperson Silvestre H. Bello III.

Hugo's arrest is another stumbling block to the peace process. The NDF-Bicol demands the release of NDFP consultant Hugo, as well as 15 other illegally detained NDFP peace consultants. The Aquino government must fulfill its obligations under the JASIG, the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) and other agreements signed with the NDFP.

Hugo was undergoing medical  treament for nerve and kidney problems when he was arrested. In violation of the JASIG, he was subjected to intense surveillance. To cover up such violation, the AFP's Southern Luzon Command spokesperson Major Angelo Guzman and Command Chief Maj. Gen. Ricardo Visaya sowed intrigues, claiming that "internal disputes on the whereabouts of extortion money led some NPAs to pinpoint Hugo to authorities".

The NDFP-Bicol demands that the officials of the PNP and AFP account for the P1.4 million  funds which Hugo had with him when he was arrested.

The NDFP-Bicol denounces the Aquino regime for criminalizing the arrest and detention of Hugo by charging him with ten cases of murder and frustrated murder. The filing of such criminal charges against Hugo violates the Hernandez Doctrine which stipulates that acts in pursuit of political objectives are considered a single political offense. This further violates the CARHRIHL which compels the GPH to abide by the Hernandez Doctrine.

The charges against Hugo are drawn from legitimate acts of war carried out by units of the New People's Army (NPA) in the course of waging civil war. The NDFP-Bicol maintains that these were acts of war carried out legitimately by units of the NPA in accordance with the Geneva Conventions and pertinent international rules of war. The NDFP-Bicol further maintains that waging war against an exploitative and oppresive system is a righteous act.

We assure the revolutionary forces that Hugo’s arrest would not significantly affect the New People's Army operations in the region. All commanders and cadres at the regional, provincial and front levels have the capacity, scientific knowledge and determination to wage and advance the protracted people's war.

To wage and carry forward the revolution is always an urgent call to change the exploitative and oppressive system perpetuated by the U.S. government, big comprador bourgeoisie, the big landlords and corrupt bureaucrats of which Aquino is the biggest.

Hail the CPP and NPA on its 46th Anniversary!
Long live the Filipino People and the Philippine Revolution!

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