BRUSSELS, Belgium – A tribal leader from Mindanao on Saturday bared that he was sexually exploited by a commander of the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines.
Datu Langilan Asenad Bago, of the Matigtalomo Manobo Tribe, shared before the Filipino community here how he was sexually abused by the communist terrorist group.
“Most painful part for me in the Salugpungan school, my classmates were sent to become full-time warriors in the NPA while my cousin and I were left and being abused by our teachers who are also commanders of the armed group. We are being raped by gays,” Bago said.
Bago added this also happened to other students of the Salugpungan school.
“I was raped by one of the commanders at the age of 14. It is the most painful experience to me, sometimes I lose my mind thinking that I have lost my future already because of my awful past,” he said.
Bago asked for support from the members of the Filipino community in order to attain justice for the IPs.
“Indigenous Peoples (fall victim) because they are easy victims. CPP-NPA comes to their ancestral domain in Mindanao and brainwashes them,” Ambassador of the Philippine Mission to Europe, H.E. Eduardo Jose De Vega said for his part.
Bae Lahong Chiary Balinan of Ata Tribe, meanwhile, said that she wants to expose the violent acts by the communist terrorist groups.
“My name Lahong means ‘voice,’ and it is given to me by our tribal leaders. So I want to use my voice to raise awareness to my fellow countrymen living abroad about what’s really happening to us, Indigenous Peoples, in the Philippines, she said.
Moreover, the IP leaders called on Filipinos in Belgium not only to condemn the terrorists’ inhumane treatment to them but also to cease donations of money to international front organizations that help channel funds the CPP’s armed group, NPA.
The Filipino community members here have also banded together to reject monetary solicitations by communist terrorist organizations masking themselves as humanitarian institutions.
Faith Nuñez, a dentist who also volunteers for different NGOs, expressed dismay after hearing the deception being perpetrated by communist terrorists about the IPs.
“I was so shocked because I’ve been supporting the Indigenous People for my whole life but I didn’t know about these all lies and covered up by some other organizations,” Nuñez said.
She said it was disturbing that communist terrorist groups are using children to solicit money for illegitimate purposes.
“I get goosebumps of what they are telling us here, those kids become one of the NPAs that we don’t know we have supported those fake NGOs giving them donations,” Nuñez added.
Duterte Diehard Supporters Europe Vice Chairman, Elmer Medrano, meanwhile, said that their engagement with the IPs was a “big eye-opener,” noting that they now “fully understand what’s really happening to our Indigenous Peoples back home.”
Medrano said Filipinos can help the IPs by sharing accurate information on social media.
“What we can do now is to spread this out, particularly here in Belgium. We will use our influence to spread these stories out and to stop funding the CPP-NPA,” he said.
He also expressed optimism that real peace will be achieved in the tribal leaders’ ancestral lands.
Nida Angcos, who came all the way from Luxembourg to join the dialogue, lauded the government’s efforts in helping the IPs through active engagements in Europe.
“We are very far from the Philippines so we are thankful that the government is doing this effort to help the IPs deliver us their real stories,” she said.
“Now that we have found out the truth, we will let our families know about this. We will orient the people who donate funds to NGOs, we will let them know to be vigilant about this because not everyone knows what’s happening in the Philippines because we live far from the Philippines,” Angcos added.
Meanwhile, Ambassador De Vega advised the Filipino community to help the National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP), which protects and promotes IP rights.
“We have a Republic Act 8371 which already created a National Commission for Indigenous Peoples, it takes care of the IPs. That’s where you can put the money if you want your money to reach their communities,” De Vega said.
The IP leaders spoke before members of the Filipino community to uncover the violent attacks committed by the CPP-NPA.
Some of the tribal leaders are also members of the Mindanao Indigenous Peoples’ Youth Organization (MIPYO) based in Bajada, Davao City where people can also donate to.
MIPYO is an IP youth organization that aims to unify and empower the youth in the tribal communities.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.