QC Mayor Bautista to unite peace talks with CPP-NDF
Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista is now a member of the government peace panel negotiating with the Communist Party of the Philippines-National Democratic Front (CPP-NDF) as talks are set to resume on Aug. 20.
“I volunteered. I got to talk to Secretary Bello and Secretary Dureza sa Sona and then I volunteered on the basis na 48 years old na ako and 47 years na na naglalaban-laban dito, so I think it’s high time na we must be able to achieve peace,” said Bautista, referring to Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza, during a chance interview in Quezon City on Saturday afternoon. “If I get the appointment officially, I will be representing the LGU (local government unit),” he said.
Bautista said he would be part of the government peace panel that would be going to Oslo, Norway, for the formal resumption of the peace talks with the CPP-NDF. The three-term mayor said the government and the communist group should “grab the opportunity” to talk about lasting peace in the country. “I think everybody should grab the opportunity na mayroong ganitong opening at ngayon ang pagkakataon natin na mag-usap usap ng seryoso, iyong tunay na pag-uusap talaga,” he said.
Bautista addressed issues on his role in the government peace panel. “Maraming nagtatanong bakit LGU? Tapos Quezon City, highly urbanized ‘yan. E marami rin naman tayong nakausap na munisipyo at saka probinsya, marami rin tayong natutunan sa kanila,” he said. “And because I am a new member, I have a fresh look at everything,” the mayor added. Bautista said Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan would also be one of the government’s peace negotiators.