Youth organizations that are clearly affiliated with the National Democratic Front (NDF) were enraged by a
recent online lecture under the National Service Training Program (NSTP). The lecture provided the students of the University of the Philippines (UP)-Baguio information on various threat groups including
the designated terrorist organization Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-New People’s Army (NPA).
As expected, these groups circulated social media alerts, held social media rally and staged a protest at UP-Baguio on November 8, 2022.

They criticized the UP-Baguio administration, the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) over said lecture, which they again linked with their invented term “redtagging”.Following the said protests, these youth groups came up with mass orientation online. These
activities will run this entire month of November, obviously for purposes of recruitment and to come up with venue to deny the truth behind their intentions that was exposed by the NSTP online lecture.

I have witnessed firsthand, as a former member of one of these groups under the NDF, how a wellmeaning
activity is twisted to create an impression among students that their academic freedom and right to peaceful assembly are being curtailed by the government. This is done only to make students hate the government and therefore join anti-government rallies and indoctrinations until they are sent to their so-called community immersion, which in fact, leads recruits to the NPA.

They can make noise all they want but there is no denying that several students who started with these youth organizations ended by getting killed when they joined the NPA. Such is the case of Finela Mejia, who started as Kabataan Partylist member in Baguio City and dying as NPA member in Ilocos Sur in February 2020. There are many others who suffered the same fate. It is the duty of the authorities and the schools to prevent this from happening to students.

Prohibiting them from providing the right information to protect the students is unreasonable and unacceptable. These groups that lead our youth to perdition, have no right whatsoever, to oblige authorities
to heed their irrational demands, more so, if these will endanger the lives of our youth. To my fellow youth, I call you to focus on preparing for our role as future leaders of this nation. Be part of this country’s success
and not its downfall.

Amianan Balita Ngayon