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Monday, June 17, 2024
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HomeProvincial NewsCalatrava mayor slams Reds for norte killing spree, urges remnants to return...

Calatrava mayor slams Reds for norte killing spree, urges remnants to return to mainstream society

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BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – The woman mayor of Calatrava, one of the far-northern Negros Occidental towns, has become the first local chief executive to condemn the Communist terrorist New People’s Army for the spate of killing of civilians in her town as she called on the remaining armed killers to yield to government.

Mayor Marilyn Era,who also heads the local End Local Communist Armed Conflict council, an inter-agency task force against the insurgents, became the first local chief executive to categorically condemn the terrorist group whose guerrilla fronts have already been dismantled across Negros island.

The 79th Infantry Battalion, the unit assigned against the Northern Negros Front, and whose area covers Calatrava town, was quoted by 79th IB civil military officer, Lieutenant Dan Carlo Samoza as having said “We are all Filipinos, there is no other people that can solve our problems except us, the Filipino people.”

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She was also quoted as having appealed to the rebels in Bisaya: “So, maghangyu ako na kung pwede makig-cooperate mo sa goberyno para ma hatagan mo ng ug unsay dapat na tabang nga mahatag sang gobyerno sa inyoha. Nangahangyu ang inyo Mayor. Daghang salamat (I ask them to please cooperate with the government so they can be given the help they need).”

Era was reacting to the spate of murders in her town since late 2021 to early 2024 believed to have been committed by the remnants of the dismantled front.

Of the 24 recorded cases in the towns of Calatrava, Toboso, Don Salvador Benedicto, and Escalante City, half of these cases were in Calatrava.

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A supposed rebel spokesman of the Jean Pelle Command had repeatedly owned up to most of the murders, with the victims being accused without proof of being military agents or having committed purported heinous crimes.

This year alone, five people were killed by the Communist terrorist remnants, all of which were admitted once more by the same rebel group.

Era gave the statement on the heels of a meeting among State security forces including the 79th IB represented by 1 Lieutenant Kenn Brian E Adesaa and town police chief, Lieutenant Artus B Escuadra, and other agencies.

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The dispatch of Samoza also said: “In response, Lieutenant Arnel P Calaoagan, the Battalion Commander of 79th IB welcomes the said condemnation. “This is a manifestation of our strong alliance towards the same goal and shared aspiration of making the Municipality of Calatrava a haven of peace and progress. Rest assured that we will remain steadfast on our commitment, on our support to the local government units to once and for all decimate this terror group. We are in one with Mayor Era on her plea for them to surrender or face the full might of our capability to serve the people and secure the land” he concluded.

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Julius D. Mariveles
Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.
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