Actress Liza Soberano should withdraw her support for the feminist group Gabriela Women’s Party because it has links to communists, a high-ranking military official said last night.
Southern Luzon Command chief Lieutenant General Antonio Parlade Jr., known for accusing politicians of having ties with the Communist Party of the Philippines, also warned the actress that she might end up like Josephine Lapira, a member of the Gabriela Youth who died three years ago during a military encounter.
“Let us not red-tag Liza Soberano. It’s not fair to her. She is merely supporting advocacy for women’s rights. She has to be protected in the exercise of her rights,” Parlade said.
Parlade added that Soberano and other “celebrity targets” have to be educated about the Malayang Kilusan ng Bagong Kababaihan, the alleged “underground mass organization” of Gabriela. He called out Gabriela Rep. Arlene Brosas for failing to inform other people about her group’s alleged “hidden violent agenda.”
He also warned former Miss Universe Catriona Gray, an urban poor advocate, and red-tagged the sister of actress Angel Locsin, Ella Colmenares. He alleged that Ella joined the New People’s Army, the Communist Party’s armed wing, in Quezon province. Locsin and Ella are aunts of human rights lawyer Neri Colmenares, a member of the party-list group Bayan Muna.
“The choice is yours Liza. And so with you Catriona [Gray]. Don’t follow the path Ka Ella Colmenares (Locsin) [who] took in the underground and [joined] NPA Quezon. I am sure Angel Locsin and Neri Colmenares will not tell you this,” he said.
Soberano has been red-tagged ever since she appeared in an online forum organized by Gabriela Youth, where she spoke about the “tragedies and hardships” faced by women and children. Her manager Ogie Diaz alleged that those who have been slandering her are being paid to do so by certain people.
The Philippines has Asia’s longest communist insurgency, one that the present administration has vowed to crush. President Rodrigo Duterte said that communist rebels are terrorists because he declared them as such.
Update: An older version of this article said that Angel Locsin and Ella Colmenares are cousins of Neri Colmenares. They are, in fact, his aunts.