THE Army's 79th Infantry (Masaligan) Battalion together with the Barangay Council of Barangay Bulanon and families of the massacre victims gathered together in a simple ceremony to commemorate the "Sagay 9" massacre on Monday, October 20, 2020, in Barangay Bulanon, Sagay City.
The fateful incident happened on the night of October 20, 2018, when a group of sugarcane farmers while eating dinner in a makeshift tent on a farm at Hda. Nene, Barangay Bulanon was attacked and fired upon by several armed men believed to be members of the New People's Army (NPA), killing nine farmers including four women and two children.
The victims were identified as members of the National Federation of Sugarcane Workers.
This year, the Sagay 9 massacre was commemorated in a simple yet solemn ceremony attended by barangay officials of Bulanon, members of the Philippine Army and families of the massacre victims.
It included a Peace Advocacy Symposium initiated by the troops of 79th Infantry Battalion (IB) to give awareness on the deceptive schemes of the communist terrorist group in recruiting and organizing unwary civilians for their evil interests.
Pastor Hope Biasca of Trinity Fellowship Church also led spiritual guidance to the families of the victims to enlighten their hearts and minds and to keep them away from being deceived and used by the left-leaning organizations, whose "evil purpose is to fuel hatred and disgust against the government."
After the ceremony, food packs were given to the families of the victims from the local government unit (LGU) of Sagay City.
Lieutenant Colonel Gerard Alvaran, commanding officer of 79th IB said, "as we pay tribute to the innocent lives who were victimized by the communist terrorist and militant groups, let us work hand-in-hand so that this kind of incident will never happen again."
"We can't afford to let this dark portion of history repeat itself in the future. We, your Philippine Army, will continue to collaborate with the LGU and PNP (Philippine National Police) to ensure the safety and well-being of our people," he added.