MORE New People’s Army (NPA) members and weapons have been accounted for by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) in a series of operations in the countryside since last week, PNP-CIDG Director Major General Eliseo DC Cruz reported yesterday.
The official said that ten firearms of different calibers, various live ammunition, and suspected rebel documents were seized by his men in an operation in Barangay Planas in Porac, Pampanga.
In a report to PNP Chief General Dionardo B. Carlos, the official said that members of the Police Regional Office 3 (PRO3) and the Philippine Army (PA) joined the CIDG Central Luzon Regional Field Unit in uncovering five cal. .22 rifles, two 12-gauge shotguns, three cal. .38 revolvers, dozens of various live ammunition, and NPA documents in the mountainous part of Bgy. Planas.
The PNP-CIDG discovered that the weapons were buried by members of the NPA’s Lino Blas Command operating in the municipalities of Porac and Floridablanca in Pampanga and some parts of Bataan.
The guns were believed to have been issued to members of the NPA’s “Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda’s Militia ng Bayan”.
According to the PNP-CIDG director, the weapons were unearthed following information furnished by a former NPA member who surrendered to the CIDG Pampanga Field Unit.
The man claimed he has personal knowledge of the killing of lawyer Anselmo Carlos and his driver Marcial Manzano in Sta. Rita, Pampanga in January 2020.
The rebel surrenderee also claimed that the twin murder case was perpetrated by members of their “Sparu Unit” following several complaints about so-called “Agaw-Lupa” or land-grabbing cases being handled by the slain lawyer.
Cruz said that discovering the pieces of evidence gave them a breakthrough in their investigation into the Carlos case.
In Masbate City, local CIDG, police, and army operatives arrested Rolly Herminia, a 51-year-old farmer in Bgy. Bapor, on the strength of a warrant for three counts of murder, attempted murder, and crime against international humanitarian law, genocide, and other crimes against humanity.
The suspect was tagged as an “NPA in the Barrio” operating under one Eddie Rosario alias “Ka Star”.
The suspects have been tagged as behind the June 5, 2021 killing of national football team player Keith Absalon and his cousin Nolven in Masbate City.
The PNP-CIDG director also welcomed five NPA members who surrendered to his men following years of involvement with the rebel group.
Last Wednesday, four of them turned themselves over to the CIDG Isabela, the local police, and the Army in Ilagan municipality.
One of the four also surrendered a 12-gauge shotgun after withdrawing her support to the CPP-NPA’s (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army) Komiteng Rehiyon-Cagayan Valley.
The surrenderee said she used to be an NPA finance and logistics officer recruited into the movement in 1980 before becoming a full-pledged NPA member in 1991, assigned to tip off the rebel organization of the presence of government troops in the province.
The 5th surrendered to CIDG Region 4-B officers in Bgy. Poblacion in Puerto Galera in Oriental Mindoro last Tuesday. He was described as a political and medical officer of the CPP-NPA’s Southern Tagalog Regional Party.
Maj. Gen. Cruz said that their ongoing effort to convince more NPA guerrillas to yield is part of their support for the government’s E-CLIP or comprehensive program to help end local communist armed conflict in the country.
The program aims to create a smooth negotiation with radical group members and expedite their fast reintegration into society as soon as they yield while providing them with a livelihood that will help them feed their families and live normal life.