News Briefs: Oct. 23, 2018
Customs personnel urged to come to Lapeña’s defense, Jose Maria Sison, Joma Sison, localized peace talks, NPA, CPP communist rebels, NDFP
Customs Deputy Commissioner Edward James Dy Buco on Monday urged the bureau’s personnel to speak out in defense of Commissioner Isidro Lapeña amid criticisms of his competence and allegations of his possible involvement in the cover-up of the smuggling of P6.8 billion worth of “shabu” (crystal meth).
“Let us be proud of him. Honestly, in this administration, he is the only hardliner official that implements truly the reforms of the Duterte administration,” Buco said during Monday’s flag-raising ceremony at the Bureau of Customs.
Lapeña has been accused by Deputy Collector Lourdes Mangaoang of inaction and possible involvement in the cover-up of the smuggling of a ton of shabu, which, according to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, was hidden in four magnetic lifters that narcotics agents found in Cavite in July. —Jovic Yee
Localized peace talks lousy idea, says Sison
Communist Party of the Philippines founding chair Jose Maria Sison described as a “lousy idea” the holding of localized peace talks and said the insurgents would not fall for the government’s bait.
In an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel on Sunday, Sison said that as long as the root of the armed conflict persisted, the revolutionary movement would live on.
He said that President Duterte was bent on ending peace negotiations between the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and the government panels.
“So long as Duterte is stubbornly sticking to his all-out war policy, I think the revolutionary forces and the people represented by the NDFP are ready to fight to the end,” he said. —Jeanette I. Andrade
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