MANILA -- Military officials on Saturday warned members of the youth sector, especially students and young professionals, against falling prey to the recruitment schemes of communist rebels.
"Another student has fallen prey to the deceitful scheme of the terrorist Communist Party of the Philippines - New People's Army. Under the guise of so-called immersion, idealistic young men and women -- mostly students -- were handed poisoned chalices by CPP-NPA cadres," Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, said when asked to comment on reports claiming that a University of the Philippines-Los BaAos (UPLB) veterinary student, allegedly recruited by the rebels, was killed in a clash with military units in Laguna on Thursday morning.
"After being initially led to the countryside allegedly to experience life with the people, these young men and women were constantly brain-washed about perceived social ills, their emotions aroused, until they are ripe for the terrorist movement. They were recruited, taught to wield arms, and eventually meet their untimely and unfortunate death fighting government security forces," Arevalo said in message to the Philippine News Agency (PNA).
He also said that AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Benjamin Madrigal Jr. strongly condemns this evil design of CPP-NPA communists.
The NPA is considered a terrorist organization by the United States and European Union.
"Time and again, he admonishes the youth, especially students and young professionals, to be very discerning about people who or groups that approach them. They should not allow themselves to be misled by nice sweet-talking individuals who'll lead them to perdition," he added.
And while commiserating with the parents of this unfortunate student and many others led astray by the rebels, Arevalo urged school officials to take full responsibility and guide children while in schools.
"We therefore appeal to the parents, and to the schools officials who should take full responsibility and custody over children while in schools under the doctrine of loco parentis, to guide their children/students," he said.
The doctrine of loco parentis refers to the legal responsibility of a person or organization to perform the functions and responsibilities of a parent.
The AFP spokesperson also reminded all parents and school officials to be mindful of their children's whereabouts at all times aside from being aware of the organizations they are joining.
"The NPA terrorists continue to lurk in our schools and communities spying for new recruits to fill the dwindling number of their cadres. Be on the lookout. Report the presences of these unscrupulous individuals to your AFP and allow us to save your children/students," Arevalo said.
Meanwhile, AFP public affairs office chief Col. Noel Detoyato said the entire nation, not only the military and government, must condemn the efforts of the communist rebels to infiltrate the youth and student sectors as part of their initiative to recruit more members for their cause.
"We call that infiltration of the youth and student sector and exploiting their vulnerabilities. The case of the UPLB student is another proof of student sector exploitation of the CPP-NPA-NDF (National Democratic Front)," he said in a message to PNA.
Detoyato added that such actions by the NPAs should be strongly condemned by all Filipinos as the youth is the country's future.
"The schools are supposed to be places where patriotism, discipline and nation-building are being inculcated to our children but the CPP-NPA-NDF (are) exploit(ing) these places," he said. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency