MANILA -- Angel Locsin felt the need to set the record straight after she and her family were red-tagged for speaking against the government.
In a lengthy Instagram post on Friday, the actress and philanthropist reiterated that she and her family are not part of the communist New People's Army (NPA) or any other "terrorist group."
Posting a close-up shot of her wearing a red top and bright red lipstick, she began with the hashtags #NoToRedTagging and #YesToRedLipstick.
"To set the record straight, hindi po ako parte ng NPA or any terrorist group. Neither my sister nor my kuya Neri is a part of the NPA or any terrorist group," she said, referring to her sister Ella and nephew Neri Colmenares. The latter is an activist and human rights lawyer, and a former representative of the Bayan Muna party-list.
"By being vocal about my opinions and advocacies, I have always been attacked," she added. "Those I could ignore but this is a different level altogether. And so I have to speak up once again because this baseless and reckless red-tagging jeopardizes not only my safety, but also the safety of my sister and our family."
Referring to the recent statement made by an official of the government's National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict against her family, Locsin said: "Nanawagan po ako sa kinauukulan, na itama po ang mali na ito. Tigilan na po ang red-tagging. The statement made is utterly false and places ordinary citizens like us, those who they swore to protect, in danger."
She also urged the government to utilize public funds more efficiently.
"Nakakalungkot po isipin na dito napupunta ang malaking halaga na P19.3B, sa mga paratang na walang basehan at pananakot na red-tagging. Sana ibigay na lang po sa ibang departamento ng AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) katulad ng medical reserve corps o pagtaas ng sweldo at pension ng mga sundalo natin," the actress said.
"Malaking tulong rin po for purchasing vaccines or other COVID response programs. Many of our countrymen need financial assistance. Mga OFW na nawalan ng trabaho. Madaming mas nangangailangan ng pera ngayon. Sana doon na lang ilaan at sana doon ibuhos ang oras," she added.
Locsin asserted her right to share her views, pointing out that the Philippines is "a country where our freedom to speak and express ourselves are enshrined and protected by the Constitution."
She stressed that people like her should not be red-tagged for having views that may be different for others.
"Kung magkaiba tayo, hindi ibig sabihing pwede mo na ako i-red-tag. Hindi tayo magkakalaban dito. Hindi rin ako 'red'. Magkaiba lang tayo ng paniniwala," she said.
Meanwhile, Locsin also appealed to the public to show their support for other personalities who are being red-tagged for their advocacies, such as fellow actress Liza Soberano and former Miss Universe Catriona Gray.
She reiterated that they, just like many other people, "are expressing their beliefs peacefully" and do not deserve such treatment.