CAMP OSITO BAHIAN, Malaybalay City (PIA)—The latest victims of the New People’s Army (NPA) torching of four households and a church in Opol, Misamis Oriental received aid from the local government unit (LGU), June 1.
Opol Mayor Maximino B. Seno led the distribution of 20 sacks of rice, 5 boxes of canned goods, and 5 boxes of noodles to the victims of NPA’s terroristic act.
Opol LGU also issued four units of handheld radio to village officials in order to increase their monitoring capabilities and the quick relay of information.
“We are deeply saddened by the incident, our people are already having a hard time coping up with their daily needs because of this COVID-19 pandemic, and then the NPA will suddenly burn houses of these innocent people? Such inhumane act will never be forgotten by the people of Opol. Aside from supplies, the local government will also provide financial assistance to the residents that lost their houses as a result of the NPA attacks so they could to start anew,” Seno said.
The torching of four houses and a ‘Born Again’ church at Zone 2, Barangay Limonda, Opol, Misamis Oriental was perpetrated by alias ‘Decoy’ and his team belonging to Guerilla Front 12, North Central Mindanao Regional Committee, local residents said.
LtCol. Benjamin Pajarito, 65th Infantry Battalion commander, said “Our unit also assisted GMA Kapuso Foundation last May 31 in giving 30 loot bags containing toys, foodstuff, and canned goods to the children directly affected by the blatant attack.”
Edward Villarias, one of the victims, said, “Kami nagpasalamat kay Mayor Seno ug sa uban pang nitabang sa amoa kay wala gyud mi nila gipasagdaan. Dako pud amoang pasalamat sa mga military ug pulis kay sila ang una gyud nga nag responde sa amoa. Kabalo mi nga kung naa ang military kay safety gyud mi. Sa mga NPA, unta ayaw mi ninyo ug damaya kay nanginabuhi ra mi para sa amoang pamilya.”
(We thanked Mayor Seno for his support and for never letting us down. We are also very thankful to our soldiers and policemen as they were the first to respond during the incident. We feel safer and secure when there are soldiers around us. To the NPAs, please spare us, we are working hard for the survival of our family)
Col. Ferdinand Barandon, 403rd Brigade commander, said, “Filing of appropriate criminal charges against these NPAs is one of the best ways to help the victims. We are doing all our best so that justice will be served soonest. Likewise, we are relentless in hunting down these terrorists and finally end insurgency in the said area.” (CMO, 403Bde, PA/PIA Bukidnon)