TOP officials of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and military in the province have condemned the ambush resulting in the death of four policemen in Ayungon, Negros Oriental Thursday, July 18.
Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office director Police Colonel Romeo Baleros, in a statement, said they strongly condemned the brutal killing of four members of the Regional Mobile Force Battalion 7.
Baleros expressed sympathy to the bereaved family of the cops as he called on the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) to stop the barbaric and inhumane act.
“We are asking the support of the general public to combat terrorist groups, who have nothing in mind but to create fear among the populace,” he said, adding that “they must heed to the call to stop on this senseless loss of lives which would only result to grief and sorrow.”
For his part, Colonel Benedict Arevalo, commanding officer of the 303rd Brigade based at Barangay Minoyan in Murcia, said the killing was brutal.
Arevalo said the four policemen were mauled, one was tied up, before they were killed.
“It shows what kind of people NPAs are. Thus, they should not be supported by the masses,” he said, adding that the the killing of four policemen is shocking.
The way they were killed shows anger. Authorities are studying what interventions to make in the area, Arevalo further said.
The army official has ordered soldiers to be more active and vigilant. “Before this incident happened, I have reminded all the forces in the area to be vigilant.”
Arevalo also condemned the usual reasons of the NPA in doing violence and killings -- which is retaliation.
“We should remember that these policemen also have families and supporters that’s why we need to closely monitor the situation,” he said.
Police Brigadier General Debold Sina, regional director of Police Regional Office 7, said the ambushed policemen belong to the 704 Mobile Force Company and are intelligence personnel.
They are identified as Police Corporal Relebert Beronio, Patrolman Raffy Callo, Patrolman Roel Cabellon, and Patrolman Marquino de Leon.
Sinas, in his report, said that the four were conducting an intel verification of the reported presence of armed rebels in are when they were suddenly ambushed by undetermined number of believed to be NPA members.
Initial investigation showed that the intel operatives were on board two motorcycles were approaching the house of a certain Oto Anadon, their contact at Sitio Yamut, when the killing took place.
The cadaver of the victims were recovered at 7:30 in the evening of Thursday after clearing the area amid reports on the presence of armed rebels.
The issued side firearms of the victims were carted away by the NPA.
Also, the two motorcycles were not recovered, it added.
The ambushers were reported to have withdrawn to a forested area of Barangay Magbato in the said locality.