Translate words into deeds; rescind VFA
& EDCA – Fisherfolk to President Duterte
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA) on Monday challenged President Rodrigo Duterte to transform his anti-United States (U.S.) pronouncements into a formal and written policies and programs; a concrete action is through the abrogation of the existing unequal military treaties like the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA).
The fisherfolk group lauds President Duterte’s consistencies on lambasting the U.S. intervention in the country’s political and economic aspects. During his state visit to China last October 18-21, President Duterte announced split with the U.S. and will further the country’s ties with China and Russia.
“We welcome President Duterte’s coherent pronouncements against the U.S. This will be a road towards pursuing a patriotic foreign policy that will develop for domestic industries. If we really want to pursue independent foreign policy, we should disentangle from all unequal military and economic treaties with the United States like the VFA, EDCA and other economic policies that stunt our economy,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
Pamalakaya said we are not completely free from the U.S. when the military treaties like VFA and EDCA are still operational. Although President Duterte has ended the US-RP military war games, no assurance that American forces will totally leave our country unless VFA and EDCA will be revoked.
“The U.S. presence in our country remains the biggest threat to our national security. It also prevents our economy and industries to grow. Now is the time for President Duterte to walk all his talk, he has no less than the Filipino people at his back in pursuing a patriotic foreign policy that will break our country from the centuries-old colonial control,”
“We urge President Duterte to prepare the VFA and EDCA’s termination paper and sign it at the drop of a hat. It can all be done within 24 hours, what’s decisive is the readiness and political will of our President to tell the American colonizers that it is the end of the road for military pact,” Hicap ended. ###