The woman behind the Maginhawa community pantry is hoping President Rodrigo Duterte would order state agents to stop red-tagging and leave in peace her welfare initiative and similar endeavors across the country.
On "The Mangahas Interviews", Ana Patricia Non said branding groups and individuals as communists was dangerous, even deadly.
“Sana nga po maglabas po ng statement si President Duterte about community pantries na hayaan niya po kami na mag exist ng mapayapa ng walang pangamba,” Non told veteran journalist Malou Mangahas.
[I hope President Rodrigo Duterte will release a statement allowing us to exist peacefully and without fear.]
“Sana po ‘wag po i-tolerate ni President Duterte ‘yung ginagawa pong pagre-redtag sa akin. Kasi ang dami na pong namamatay sa red-tagging talaga po and delikado siya eh,” she added.
[I hope he won’t tolerate the red-tagging being done against me. Because many have died due to red-tagging. It’s really dangerous.]
Non’s remarks came after the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) and the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) linked the community pantry initiative to the communist movement on social media.
While the QCPD apologized for its social media post, NTF-ELCAC spokesperson Lieutenant General Antonio Parlade Jr. likened Non and other community pantries to Satan’s deception of Eve.
Assistant Secretary Lorraine Badoy accused Non of being a communist.
Parlade admitted that the NTF-ELCAC was conducting background checks on community pantry organizers. He alleged that the initiatives have been the source of anti-government propaganda.
The National Privacy Commission has said the profiling of pantry organizers and the collection of their personal data was "unjust."
“Kung gusto po nila ako kilalanin sana ni-reserve din nila ‘yung judgement sa akin katulad ng ginagawa sa pantry. Pero hindi po, eh, malinaw po talaga na sinisiraan nila ako at mali po ang kwento,” Non said.
[If they want to know me, I hope they’ll reserve judgment like what they did for the pantry. But it wasn’t like that. It’s clear that they’re trying to destroy my name and are telling the wrong story.]
Several senators have called for the defunding of the NTF-ELCAC following Parlade and Badoy’s statement but were shot down by Malacañang.
The Palace has distanced itself from the supposed red-tagging of community pantry organizers.
Non said she only wanted to help the public that was suffering amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Nagiging sagabal po ‘yung red-tagging talaga para sa pamilya po. Katulad po nung nag pause kami. Hundred po ‘yung family na walang nauwing pagkain po talaga dahil kailangan namin mag pause for security purposes,” she said.
[The red-tagging is getting in the way of helping families. Like when we had to stop. Hundred of families went home with nothing because we had to pause for security purposes.] --Joahna Lei Casilao/NB, GMA News