Duterte appeals to communist rebels anew: 'I don't want war, come down now'

Published March 18, 2022, 11:50 AM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

President Duterte called on the communist rebels anew to return to the fold of the law while he is still in office, stressing the need to end the country’s decades-long communist insurgency.

President Rodrigo Duterte (Malacañang photo)

Duterte made this appeal as he led the inauguration of the new Leyte Provincial Capitol and distribution of land certificates in Palo, Leyte, on Thursday, March 17.

In his speech, which was delivered in Bisaya, the President said it would be better for the communist rebels to surrender while he is still in office because he does not know his successor’s policy.

“Tell them (the communists) I don’t want war. Tell them to come down here. Let them know that this is my policy; I’m now laying down the policy. I will guarantee it, but I don’t know about the next President,” he said.

“I’ve been calling for this for at least three years. If they surrender, I’ll accept them. But if they take their time and wait to decide, then the problem there is I’m about to step down from the presidency,” he added.

“If I stay a bit longer, then they will get to experience it; I’ll distribute lands. We have to end this stupid war.” he continued.

Aside from attending the inauguration rites, the President led the partial turnover of completed housing units in Peace and Prosperity Village in San Isidro, Leyte.

He also spearheaded the distribution of Certificates of Land Ownership Awards (CLOA) to Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs) representatives.

During the inauguration, Duterte unveiled the project marker of the new government structure together with Leyte Governor and Leyte Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (ELCAC) Chairperson Leopoldo Dominico Petilla.

Following his event in Palo, the President inaugurated the Tacloban City Bypass Road and unveiled the project marker in a ceremony in Barangay Caibaan, Tacloban City.

The 6.4-kilometer Tacloban City Bypass Road starts at Daang Maharlika in Barangay Nula-tula and ends along the same road in Barangay Caibaan.

The newly completed project is expected to ease traffic congestion in the area, improve road network accessibility, increase development potentials, and reduce travel time from 1.5 hours to just 30 minutes.

At least 1,000 motorists per day will benefit from the new infrastructure project.