The Truth behind the crimes in Barangay Panobigon, Canlaon City

Frank Fernandez
Spokesperson, NDF-Negros

Other versions: Kamatuoran bahin sa krimen sa Brgy Panobigon , Canlaon City (Bisaya)

The 303rd Brigade Philippine Army, 11th Infantry Battalion, and the Philippine National Police Chief of Canlaon City have collaborated to spread lies in order to hide the truth behind the heinous crimes of murder, frustrated murder and illegal arrests committed by Col. Franco Nemesio Gacal, Lt. Leonardo Canete and troopers of the 11th IB PA.

They are responsible for the armed attack on the Febleo family of Brgy Panobigon, Canlaon City on the night of January 25, 2009 that resulted to the death of two persons, the wounding of two others and the arrest of one. The story of the Philippine Army and the Philippine National Police after the gruesome incident was a package of LIES, that the "casualties" were members of the New People's Army from Barangay (village) Codcod, San Carlos City, that a carbine rifle with ammunitions were confiscated, and that the victims were a part of a 10-man squad of the NPA that "encountered" the elements of the 11th IB PA.

According to a report of the Leonardo Panaligan Command (LPC) of Central Negros sent to the office of NDF-Negros, there was no NPA unit in Brgy Panobigon at the time of the incident of the crime, no one from Brgy Codcod, San Carlos City is in the roster of the NPA, and no carbine rifle is issued to any NPA combatant because of the scarcity of it's type of ammunition. The initial investigation of the said NPA command showed that the victims were innocent unarmed civilians. Col. Gacal and his intelligence agents made a fatal mistake in concluding that the persons in the house of the Fableos were members of the NPA that he ordered the unit under Lt Leonardo Canete to launch a combat operation.

We appeal to the officials of the church, mass media and KARAPATAN-Negros to initiate a joint fact finding mission or separately in Brgy Panobigon and Brgy Codcod to make an impartial investigation. We also request the wounded victims and the detained, families of the victims and the people who knew the victims to speak of the TRUTH. You must resist the pressure of threats and persuasions from the high officials of the Phil Army and psywar experts that are maneuvering to absolve the responsibilities of the criminals in the Phil Army.

Col Gacal, commanding officer of the 11th IB must be punished and Lt Leonardo Canete being the prinsipal and directly responsible for the commital of the crime in Brgy Panobigon. The People's Court of the Democratic Government of the People have issued an order to the command of the NPA to arrest these persons so they can answer for their crimes against the people. Gen Josue Gaverza of the 303rd Bde Phil Army is also liable for his command responsibility in forcing his commanders and forces to implement what he calls "decisive action against the NPA" in 2009 without any consideration if civilians will be hurt or killed so he can recover from his failures and panic in 2008.

The crime committed in Brgy Panobigon is just one of the worsening crimes and violations of the Comprehensive Agreement on Repect of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, and Protocols of Geneva Conventions against the people committed by the AFP and PNP deployed in Negros. These crimes further escalated as triggered by the Enhanced National Internal Security Policy (ENISP) and Oplan Bantay Laya II (OBL II) of the Arroyo regime that unleash fascist terrorism of the reactionary state thru the AFP and PNP to coerce the people and suppress the revolutionary movement and the legal democratic movement of the people in order to protect the exploitative and repressive ruling social system in the country that is being shaken by the deepening economic and political crisis.

The people will have no peace as the domination of US imperialism and the local reactionaries of the compradors and landlords persist and their fascist instruments in the AFP and PNP sow terror among the people. Freedom and democracy, peace and progress will only reign thru the advance and victory of the national democratic revolution against the ruling semi colonial semi feudal system of the country and the establishment of socialism as transition to communism.

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