By ARIS FRANCISCO, Spokesperson
Compostela Valley – North Davao – South Agusan Sub-Regional Command
NPA Southern Mindanao
The Compostela Valley-North Davao-South Agusan Sub-Regional Command of the New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao kept custody of Police Officer 1 Nemuel Espana and Police Officer 2 Ronald Allan Munez, both from the Philippine National Police in Loreto, Agusan del Sur as prisoners of war for four days, before the two escaped on 18 April at around 2:00 pm.
With the prisoners’ flight, the process of legal and judicial proceeding has been suspended and all consideration to exonerate the two cops of the charges are moot and academic.
As such, the NPA Sub-regional Command considers the two police officers fugitives from the laws of the People’s Democratic Government and are targets for re-arrest.
NPA Guerilla Front 3 Red fighters disarmed and arrested the police officers at a “hantakan” or gambling den in Sitio Muto, Loreto poblacion during the eve of its feast last 14 April 2013 at 11:00 pm. Red fighters also confiscated from the prisoners of war a .45 caliber pistol, a 9 mm caliber pistol, one ICOM radio and one set of handcuffs.
The two POWs were arrested following a formal complaint lodged by the masses. The complaint specified that the police officers were responsible for a series of extortion, gambling, drunkenness and shabu drug pushing. POW Espana and POW Munez, according to the masses, would also secure “tong” from cockfighting enthusiasts while they would be in an abusive drinking binge in full view of the people.
Organs of the People’s Democratic Government and the NPA custodians were on the process of completing its investigation over the two POWs. While the two have been abusive in their duties as police officers, they did not commit grave and serious crimes against the people and the revolutionary movement. They did not violate human rights and international humanitarian law in the course of their police work and as an adjunct force in the counter-revolutionary operations in the countryside of the government of the Republic of the Philippines. The two POWs have also apologized for their offensive ways and vowed to rectify and depart from their anti-social and anti-people activities.
But lapses in the NPA custodial security force on 18 April provided the two prisoners an opportunity to escape. Such actions on the part of the prisoners reflect that they have not been genuinely contrite with their pronouncements and have shown disrespect in the revolutionary justice. Hence, they shall face the full weight of the revolutionary criminal and penal laws of the People’s Democratic Government.
Indeed, the NPA continues to step up its active operations against undesirable elements and abusive police and military operations in its area of jurisdiction. On 15 April 2013, NPA Guerilla Front 33 operatives also punished the Reengineered Special Operations Team (RSOT) of the 60th Infantry Batallion by sniping its team leader, one Corporal Zalde Sario, in Purok 7, Bukaran, Sta. Fe, New Corella, Davao del Norte.
Some 10 elements of the RSOT or what the military deceptively calls “peace and development team” arrived in that village on 12 March. Since then, they have held an assembly or mass meeting and census-like profiling where they asked the masses as to the latter’s participation in a barricade rally of typhoon Pablo victims in Montevista town, on 15 January. The RSOT also threatened the peasants that they should stop supporting the NPA or else they would be “massacred.”
While the fascist soldiers were ensconced in civilian-populated facilities in the village, they engaged in various offensive activities like excessive drinking sprees and gambling.
After Cpl. Sario was punished, the 60th Infantry Battalion reinforced its troops with another platoon of soldiers, assembled the masses, and ordered them to take part in laborious and dangerous activities like fortifying the military detachment with parapet, sandbag and foxhole.
With the reinforcements and more intense and atrocious military operations in the countryside, the NPA will continue to step up its campaign war against abusive cops and soldiers to defend the masses and uphold law and order in the guerrilla bases and guerrilla zones.
(Sgd.) Ka Aris Francisco
Comval-North Davao South Agusan Sub-regional Command
NPA Southern Mindanao