'Testimonies’ from ex-rebels was basis of Badoy’s ‘red-tagging’ of Makabayan solons | Inquirer News
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‘Testimonies’ from ex-rebels was basis of Badoy’s ‘red-tagging’ of Makabayan solons

/ 01:42 PM October 16, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Testimonies from supposed former rebels apparently served as basis for Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Undersecretary Lorraine Badoy in “terrorist-tagging” the Makabayan lawmakers of the House of Representatives.

During the budget deliberations on the proposed budget of the PCOO on Friday, ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. France Castro lamented the “lack of remorse” from Badoy in claiming that the Makabayan lawmakers are “high-ranking party members” of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).

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Such tags to lawmakers including the Makabayan bloc, Castro said, are also an attack to the House as an institution.

“Nakakalungkot habang tinitingnan natin at nagi-interpellate si Congressman Ferdinand Gaite, walang remorse, para talagang—nakakalungkot na talagang hindi makakakitaan ng pagpapakumbaba o pagkamababang-loob ang isang Usec na ito na parte ng gobyerno ni Presidente Duterte,” Castro said as she talked of Badoy who was also present in the deliberations.

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According to Castro, one of Badoy’s statements included a claim that the Makabayan lawmakers are “high ranking officers” of the CPP-NPA-NDF.

The Makabayan bloc in the House consists of Castro; Bayan Muna Representatives Carlos Zarate, Ferdinand Gaite, and Eufemia Cullamat; Gabriela Partylist Rep. Arlene Brosas; and Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago.

Castro then asked if Badoy has “personal knowledge” to serve as the basis of her claims against the lawmakers.

“Ito ay nanggaling sa mga nag-surrender na kadre. Doon po nakuha ang iba-ibang impormasyon ukol dito,” Bataan Rep. Jose Enrique Garcia, quoting Badoy who was relaying responses and was standing next to him, said.

Garcia was defending the budget of the PCOO.

Another accusation that Badoy made, Castro said, was that the lawmakers were the ones commanding the NPA in its operations.

“Galing rin po ito sa mga former high-ranking official ng CPP-NPA,” Garcia added.

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Unsatisfied by this explanation, Castro said that this means that Badoy has “no personal knowledge” since these are not first-hand information.

Nonetheless, repeatedly Castro asked for a categorical answer, even raising her voice at one point, on whether or not Badoy has a “personal knowledge” to base her claims on.

“Doon ba sa binanggit ko na dalawang statements na bahagi ng kanyang post—o bahagi ng kanyang personal post sa Facebook—siya ba ay may personal knowledge? Yes or no lang,” Castro said.

“I want a categorical answer, mula dito kay Usec Badoy, mayroon ka bang personal knowledge doon sa sinasabi mo doon sa Facebook account mo? Yes or no?” a visibly irate Castro added.

In response, Garcia said: “Yes, Mr. Speaker. Ito po ay mga sworn statements.”

“Yes po, Mr. Speaker. Meron po siyang personal knowledge kaya din kanina nabanggit ko na kung nais ng ating mga kasamahan dito sa Kongreso, ay maaari pong—willing po sila na makaroon ng executive session upang masabi nila ang lahat ng kanilang personal knowledge tungkol sa mga bagay na ito,” Garcia added.

But once again, Castro said personal knowledge should be first-hand information.

Aside from Castro, the PCOO was also grilled by other Makabayan lawmakers Gaite and Elago.

In September, the committee deliberations on PCOO’s budget was deferred after Badoy refused to apologize and remove her posts red-tagging several Makabayan lawmakers.

EDV

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TAGS: Lorraine Badoy, Makabayan, PCOO, red-tagging
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