On Wednesday, Ana Patricia Non bravely reopened her newly started Maginhawa community pantry in Quezon City after a day of closure.
This was after she was red-tagged or accused of being a communist by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), and called her project on helping the needy a “modus operandi.”
“Hindi naman po ako natakot sa buhay ko. N’ong una, mas naisip ko paano na kaya yung mga pipila bukas kung kailangan ko i-cancel… Ako, isang tao lang apektado sa red tagging. Pero yung pipila, hundreds, walang maiuuwi, walang maluluto,” said Non.
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte is angry with those who red-tagged Non, especially as she acknowledges what the volunteer has done in the city.
“What they’re doing, walang coordination… It scares our constituents. What they’re doing, it sows fear,” said Belmonte.
“I would like to ask the NTF-ELCAC, maybe we can be more sensitive. We don’t want to sow fear. We don’t want to scare the innocent. We don’t want to prevent people that do acts of kindness.”
“But if you have intel, then we will work with you,” she added.
Mayor Joy Belmonte asks NTF-ELCAC to be ‘more sensitive’
Belmonte added that after Non’s community pantry in Maginhawa last week, it has spread to QC which is now in its 70s.
“Hindi po siya tungkol sa akin. Pero nagpapasalamat po ako, kasi nandon ang pangangailan talaga para tulungan ang kapwa po natin,” said Non.
Belmonte said they will only slow down and as much as possible they do not want regulation.
Non had a message for President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Sana makita po natin, hindi sila pipila kundi naman kailangan. Nararanasan ito sa buong bansa… Nakikita sa barangay nila,nandon ang pangangailangan.”
The Philippine National Police (PNP) clarified on Tuesday that they do not have any kind of profiling conducted on the organizers of community pantries.
This was followed by reports of community pantries visited by police.
In a statement, PNP Chief Gen Debold Sinas said there is no order for the police to profile because the volunteerism of private citizens is out of the interest of the PNP.