NPA commits 62 criminal acts in Mindanao—AFP

Published by rudy Date posted on May 2, 2011

At least 62 criminal incidents, mostly extortion activities, were attributed to the communist New People’s Army (NPA) in some pro

Army 4th Infantry Division (ID) chief Maj. Gen. Victor Felix said that aside from extortion, the NPA was also blamed for ambuscades, burning or destruction of properties and liquidation.

However, of the 62 criminal acts blamed to the NPA from January to April this year, 44 were extortion activities preying on both big and small businesses operating in the provinces of Agusan del Sur, Agusan del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental.

According to Felix, the NPA prey on small- and large-scale miners, contractors, farmers and even ordinary citizens.

“By this trend of NPA atrocities, we can easily conclude that they are now more concerned on getting more profits than any other activity. It is no longer a case of extortion for mere survival but of obtaining more revenues for their own benefits and lavishness,” Felix said .

The NPA extortion activities went on its peak in March, the same month the communist armed wing celebrated its 42nd founding anniversary.

Meanwhile, eight burning incidents were also attributed to the NPA, torching down trucks, backhoes, and pieces of equipment, as well as agricultural products. Six of these occurred in Bukidnon; where on two instances, trucks loaded with sugarcanes and bananas were burned down en-route to their particular destinations.

“What we find very unjust in NPA extortion is that ordinary people are honestly earning their living, sweating it out, using bones and muscles to feed their families, and then the NPA will just easily take their earnings away,” decried Maj. Eugenio Julio Osias IV, spokesman of the 4th ID and the commanding officer of the 4th Civil-Military Operations Battalion.

“As we celebrate the Labor Day, we pay tribute to our workers and to business entities especially those that remain defiant against the demands of the NPA. We salute you for your courage. For the victims, allow us to help you. This injustice by the NPA should be stopped, but we need cooperation from you,” Osias added.

Osias also tagged the NPAs for six ambush incidents within the jurisdiction of the 4th ID. Significant cases, include the treacherous attack on police’s SOCO team that was merely responding to a killing incident in Malaybalay City on March 6; and the ambush of Land Transportation Office personnel in Sibagat, Agusan del Sur on March 21.

The NPA, Osias said, was also responsible for the killing of Barangay Chairman Antonio Apat of Barangay Teresita, Bayugan City, who was shot to death on March 17, while Kagawad Perfecta Pasco of Barangay Dalwangan, Malaybalay City was also killed inside her store by the NPAs last Jan. 16.–Mario J. Mallari, Daily Tribune

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