ACT official says he received death threat

Inday Espina-Varona, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 12 2019 12:50 AM

MANILA - The secretary-general of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers of the Philippines reported receiving a death threat Friday afternoon.

Raymund Basilio told ABS-CBN News he received a call around 1:20 pm, right after his opening statement at a Baguio press conference denouncing police surveillance of the militant union’s members.

“He started talking about my whereabouts and asked me if I’m willing to cooperate with him,” Basilio said.

The caller only identified himself as “Gary.”

“He said that he knows where I live and other personal details,” Basilio added. 

The number reflected on the ACT leader’s mobile phone indicated a prepaid account.

The caller said that if Basilio dropped the call, “that means that I’m not willing to cooperate and, therefore, he will carry out the order.”

“He will send 4 people to hunt me down in Quezon City,” according to Basilio.

The caller did not say whose orders he was following, except that it came from “a unit in Davao,” Basilio said.

ACT leaders are in Baguio for their 5th national leadership training and seminar.

The 180,000-strong ACT is currently the bargaining unit for public school teachers in the National Capital Region and 4 more provinces.

Intelligence units of the Philippine National Police (PNP) have admitted sending requests to various division officers and schools under the Department of Education, for an “inventory” of ACT members and allies.

While PNP Director-General Oscar Albayalde denied issuing any such order, he accused the ACT of being one of the “legal fronts” of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CCP).

He also claimed CPP founder Jose Maria Sison had acknowledged the ACT as a front organization. 

But the undated video he furnished journalists only showed Sison distinguishing rebel forces from legal democratic groups.