DEFENSE Secretary Delfin Lorenzana expressed support to the move of National Security Adviser (NSA) Hermogenes Esperon to ask the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to block websites that have links to the communist terrorist group.

Lorenzana maintained that they are just protecting the public, especially of the youth, from disinformation against the government.

“ We are not against free speech. In fact, we encourage and protect it,” he said.

“Mabawasan ‘yung disinformation and prevent the recruitment of more youths. They are so gullible and susceptible to propaganda and disinformation,” he added.

Lorenzana said this will contribute to the government’s effort to defeat the communist terrorist group New People’s Army (NPA).

Ending insurgency was one of the priority programs of the Duterte administration.

The Community Party of the Philippines denounced what they tagged as “Marcos Anti-Democracy (MAD) internet firewall.”

In a statement, Marco Valbuena, the chief information officer of CPP, said it was the government’s desperate bid to censor online criticisms and dissent against incoming President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos.

It is also aimed at suppressing progressive, patriotic and revolutionary journalism and literature which exposes the ills of the ruling system.

Valbuena said that out of the over 20 websites Esperon requested to be taken down, only seven were actually affiliated to the CPP and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines.

He said the others were websites of local cause-oriented groups, alternative news and international organizations.

“In behalf of all the oppressed and exploited classes and sectors, the CPP asserts the intrinsic right of people of whatever affiliation-social, political, ideological, national, cultural or gender-based-to express their ideas and views, and promote patriotic, progressive, anti-imperialist and revolutionary programs as alternative to the ruling pro-imperialist, reactionary, fascist and militarist agenda of the ruling system,” said Valbuena. (SunStar Philippines)