Lorenzana hits ‘deceptive’ recruitment of minors to leftist groups
MANILA, Philippines — Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Thursday scored the reported recruitment of students and minors by left-leaning organizations.
“The communist terrorist CPP-NPA-NDF does not care for the lives of children since they will use anyone to forward their selfish agenda,” the Defense chief said in a statement.
His statement comes a day after the Senate conducted a hearing to look into the alleged recruitment of students in schools.
Parents of the missing students who allegedly joined leftist groups showed up at the Senate hearing to testify. The parents said their children joined Anakbayan, Kabataan party-list, and League of Filipino Students.
“Using ‘legal front’ organizations that purportedly advance the people’s democratic rights, they have freely operated in democratic spaces such as campuses and vulnerable communities to lure our citizens into joining sectoral organizations and eventually, the armed movement,” Lorenzana said.
Based on former communist rebels undergoing psycho-social interventions and availing assistance under the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program, Lorenzana said that several of them were recruited at age 14 or 15.
“That is why the defense and military establishments are very vocal against the deceptive recruitment of young Filipinos in our schools and other institutions, and strongly condemn the abhorrent practice of using children in armed conflict,” he said.
The recruitment has been a practice of the communist rebels for decades, he added. /kga
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.