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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Arrest NDF consultants, SolGen asks trial courts

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THE government has asked various courts to cancel the bail bonds and instead order the arrest of consultants of the National Democratic Front facing criminal cases following the termination of the backchannel talks with communist insurgents.

Solicitor General Jose Calida on Friday revealed that they asked several courts to order the arrest of NDF consultants who were conditionally released to allow them to join in peace talks between the government and the NDF.

Calida said that the conditional release granted them by the courts was for the sole purpose of the peace negotiations, including backchannel talks that the Duterte administration had canceled after the New People’s Army attacked government troops in several provinces.

The chief state lawyer cited the Supreme Court resolution dated Aug. 2, 2016, which allowed the provisional liberty of NDF personalities Satur Ocampo, Randall Echanis and Vicente Ladlad.

“One of the conditions provide that once the peace negotiations are terminated, their bonds are deemed automatically canceled,” Calida said.

“Since all judicial decisions form part of the law of the land, the courts can now issue recommitment orders as these NDF consultants are similarly situated to Echanis and Ladlad,” he said.

Calida said President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration that the CPP-NPA rebels are enemies of the state “signifies that any peace negotiations with them… must officially end.”

Twenty-one NDFP consultants, accused of various criminal cases pending before different trial courts in the country, were granted conditional release by the trial courts to enable them to participate in the peace negotiations in Oslo, Norway.

Records showed that among the NDF consultants who have been released on bail were CPP-New People’s Army leaders Benito and Wilma Tiamzon, who are both facing multiple murder and kidnapping charges before the Manila and Quezon City regional trial courts.

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