MP town condemns NPA

GRAND WINNER-- The street dancing team of the town of Sabangan was adjudged champion in the competition held April 6, 2019 as part of the 15th edition of the Lang-ay Festival of Mountain Province with a cash prize of P35,000. Sadanga and Bontoc settled for first and second runners up with cash prizes of P30,000 and P25,000, respectively.** Ferdie Cariño Castañeda

TADIAN, Mtn. Prov.– Some 500 local folks from all over this town staged a condemnation rally to show their resentment against the Communist Party of the Philippines-New Peoples Army on April 9, 2019 at the Poblacion here. They dubbed the event as a “Unity for a Peaceful Community” by condemning insurgency.
The participants paraded along the streets of the Poblacion with placards bearing messages denouncing the “killing of uniformed personnel, other terrorist activities” and the presence of the communist group in the locality which was highlighted by conducting a program at the Tadian Central School.
It can be recalled that on March 29, 2019, one government trooper was killed while another was wounded during an encounter at Bagnen, Bauko. On April 2, 2019, another policeman was killed while eight were injured when the troopers were conducting clearing operations at the mountainous areas in the boundary of Bauko and Tadian. They accidentally hit an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) or landmine allegedly planted by NPA cadres and an exchange of gun fire ensued.
The indignation rally was spearheaded by Tadian Mayor Anthony D. Wooden, an army reservist with the rank of major, to show support to police officers and the Philippine Army.
Also present during the condemnation rally were barangay officials and other volunteers for peace who aired their sentiments and anger against the NPA.
In a privilege speech before punong barangays (PBs), Jovita San Jose of the Poblacion said that “agonies of fear, anxiety and pity for the uniformed personnel tormented the feelings of the people of Poblacion, Tadian while hearing gunshots during the encounter until the time of extraction of victims. I pray that peace and order will be restored in our locality,” she added.
PB Homer Daguio of barangay Balaoa expressed his discontent against the NPA saying that he has not seen any good deed done by the group ever since he became aware of their existence. Another punong barangay claimed that their water reservoir has been contaminated because of garbage dumped by the armed group when they camped within its vicinity..
PB Resurrection Wanget of Bunga said that it’s not just the uniformed personnel who were affected by the atrocities but the whole community.
In addition, PB Fabian Bilayan of barangay Dacudac said that activities of the NPA like the “ambushing” of our government troops give off a bad impression on our community and the ideology of the armed group. It will not only be seen as not a safe place to live, work and do business in, but people will have the idea that the NPA ideology is being fought for in the wrong way.
Aside from the aforementioned sentiments, some PBs decried the armed group as not composed of peace loving people and that the community should stop supporting them by not giving them food and medicine but instead convince them to surrender to authorities. Now, the people are afraid to go and tend to their farms as they could be hit by stray bullets, they added.
In support of the rally, some private individuals talked about how they were helped by the police through the police community relation program where they could even be called to help in the construction of houses.
The program ended by the signing of a covenant condemning the NPA.
As of this writing, a similar activity was being conducted in the nearby town of Bauko, this province, condemning the NPA and clamoring for peace.** ArisOCB

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