A manhunt is underway against suspected members of the New People’s Army who allegedly killed five persons in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental, Philippine National Police chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar said Sunday.
“Right now, authorities are conducting manhunt operations against the suspects of this crime. We promised to the bereaved families of the victims that justice will be served,” Eleazar said in a statement.
“We are getting the statements from the victims’ families and witnesses which will be a big help in identifying the persons behind the killing and solving this case,” he added.
Initial investigation showed that the victims were killed in front of their families inside their respective homes in Barangay Trinidad.
He said the victims were possibly suspected by the NPA as government informants in the clash between the military and the communist terrorists on March 23, in which 10 rebels were killed.
“At least 10 were killed from the NPA side and this is one of the possible motives of the killings. The NPA might have taken revenge. We have information that two of the victims were former NPA supporters. We will look into all possible motives,” Eleazar said.
“We have directed our local police to coordinate with our local government officials to intensify security in barangay and nearby places. We are ready to protect the community against atrocities by the NPA and other lawless groups,” he added.
Meanwhile, Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Carlos Zarate on Sunday condemned the red-tagging of institutions and judicial processes by members of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) “merely because these institutions disagree with the red-tagging task force.”
“We condemn the continued red tagging of institutions and those who resort to judicial processes by members of the NTF-ELCAC because these institutions disagree with them,” he said.
Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade, in a television interview, earlier said the “communist insurgency of Jose Maria Sison has indeed succeeded in destroying one of the pillars of our democracy—the Senate” following the demand of some 15 senators for him to be axed as spokesperson of the NTF-ELCAC.
“Simply because the Senate believes that NTFE-LCAC funds should be channeled to COVID response, Gen. Parlade’s myopic imputation now is that the Senate and the senators are also part of the rebellion being waged by the CPP. This hubris on the part of the military under President Rodrigo Duterte has gone wild as it shoots at anybody who they believe is critical of them,” Zarate added.