President Duterte has invited nurses from the New People’s Army (NPA) to “come down” and help the government in its response to the pandemic amid the soaring cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

President Rodrigo Duterte addresses the nation on Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Malacañang photo)

In his taped public address late Thursday, Jan. 6, Duterte made a call to Filipino nurses, who are members of the rebel NPA, to come down and help as he ensured their safe tour of duty in the community and until they go back to their units.

“Yung mga nurses na nag-NPA, pagbaba kayo (If NPA nurses come down), I assure you that if you give an advanced notice that you are going down to participate in these people who are offering their services, tutal magbayad man ako, magtulong kayo (I will pay and you help). Pagtapos niyan (After that), I will also guarantee that you can go back to your unit and fight another day,” Duterte said.

The President even invited them to visit Malacañang and have coffee with him while assuring them of their safety.

“Bumaba kayo (Come down), I will be gracious as long as you do it for your fellowmen. I will be very happy,” he said.

The President went on to say that he was being serious with his offer.

“Ako, I’m really very serious. ‘Pag magbaba ka (If you come down) with a good motivation and you do it, you can go around, you will not be arrested and if you are arrested I will order your release,” he said.

“Pagbalik ninyo (When you go back) same guarantee. Pagbalik ninyo bukid sa bukid tapos fight na naman tayo. Pagbalik ninyo sa bukid, kung may encounter, e patayan na lang. E away ‘to e (When you go back to the field, we’ll fight again. We’ll kill each other. Because we’re in a war),” he added.

Meanwhile, Duterte also thanked the communist armed group “for not being obstructionist in the operation in the matter of the aid given to the people” in these trying times.

He was referring to the reported incidents of rebels taking away the “ayuda” given by the government to the vulnerable sector.

“I am directing myself to the Communist Party of the Philippines, at this time of our national life, we’re having a serious problem. If you cannot cooperate, if you cannot help, then you can stand aside and let the government to operate,” he said.

Source: Manila Bulletin (