The Army’s 58th Infantry Battalion (58IB) has joined the local government unit (LGU) of Claveria in Misamis Oriental in condemning the human rights violation committed by alleged New Peoples’ Army (NPA) members when it burned three dump trucks and a bus on October 6, 2020.
Claveria Mayor Meraluna Abrogar said the attack was “clear evidence” of the NPA’s “hostile nature and a “desperate move” to discredit the government.
“We are saddened by the act of terrorism, but we still continue to fight and protect peace and public welfare.” “We strongly believe that we are still the government of the people and for the people,” Abrogar said.
Lt. Col. Ricky Canatoy, 58IB commander, said the rebels burned down three civilian-owned dump trucks and a civilian bus in Sitio Talambao, Barangay Bulahan, Claveria.
Canatoy said the dump trucks were used for hauling seedlings while the bus was utilized to ferry workers of Del Monte Philippines, Inc.
He said the rebels withdrew towards the nearby Balingasag town and are being pursued by government troops as of this posting.
“We, together with the LGU strongly condemn the CPP (Communist Party of the Philippines)-NPA terrorists for their blatant disregard of human rights. Besides, we will not allow these terrorists to plant fear to the communities and people whom we have sworn to protect,” the Army official said.
Canatoy said the burning of civilian-owned properties was not only a human rights violation but also violated the provisions of the Anti-terrorism Act of 2020 signed by President Rodrigo Duterte in July this year. (Jigger Jerusalem, PNA)