President Duterte has likened the communist New People’s Army to the so-called Islamic State terror group.
Speaking in Davao City, the president said troubles in Mindanao were not due to the inhabitants, but to the ideologies of the two armed groups.
“The problem with the Philippines is actually terrorism. The ISIS. It’s really very dangerous. And that is not our ideology,” he said.
“It’s not the idea of the Moro in Mindanao. Our Moro brothers and sisters have nothing to do with it. Some of it [ideology] rubbed off of them in the same manner with majority of the NPAs and the Christians,” he added.
Addressing the Moro directly, he said: “Your lives are in disarray. But who will be able to solve this? It’s you.
“You’re not even prepared to die for God, but you’d be willing to die for an ideology. Whose ideology is that? It’s Sison’s. Who is he? He’s only a man. What is he? Stupid. Very stupid.”
He also described Jose Sison, the founding chairman of the Communist Party of the Philippines as a coward.
“Then you follow Sison whom you’ve treated as your God. Sison is the most cowardly of all cowards. He was my idol when I was still a student.” Sison tutored the young Duterte when he was a university student.
“But now, whenever I talk to him, he tells me that he wants to join the government. We are like a politburo if that’s the case. A committee. They like that.”
He added that one of the reasons why he decided to end peace talks with the communists was because they wanted a coalition government.
“Our Constitution is the basis of sovereignty and the power lies in the government. It can only be given to the person who was chosen by the people.
“But the person who would choose something like that is an immature coward.”
The president terminated the peace talks last November, citing their Red faction’s insincerity in negotiations.
He also urged fighters to surrender. “The barometer is if they give up or — there’s only two options — they give up or they’re all dead,” he said.