A 21-YEAR-OLD alleged female member of the New People’s Army (NPA) was killed during a clash between the Philippine Army’s 93rd Infantry Battalion and rebel group in Kananga, Leyte Friday, November 27, 2020.
Authorities identified the fatality as a certain Rochelle Mae “Ruth/Justine” Bacalso, said to be a newly-recruited member of the remnants of sub-regional committee Levox-Eastern Visayas regional party.
The young NPA fighter sustained gunshot wounds in the body during a 15-minute gunfight around 3:35 p.m. Friday, November 27, 2020 at Sitio Mat-i, Barangay Mahawan, Kananga.
“The attending physician declared her dead when brought to the Kananga Municipal Hospital, where the troops rushed her in an attempt to save her life,” said the 802nd Infantry Brigade based in Ormoc City.
Troops recovered one Austrian-made Glock pistol, one bandolier for M16 magazines, one magazine for M16 rifle with 29 pieces of caliber 5.56 ammunition, one backpack with personal belongings, one cellular phone, four hammocks, four poncho tents, and documents with high intelligence value from the encounter site.
In a statement, the Army also identified Bacalso as one of the NPA members who attempted to ambush a team of soldiers patrolling in the area recently.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Zosimo Oliveros, commander of the 802nd Infantry Brigade, called on the NPA rebels “to abandon the armed struggle and return to the mainstream of the society and become productive citizens.”
Eastern Visayas has remained a hotbed of the NPA, which has been waging guerrilla warfare against the government since the late 1960s.(SunStar Philippines)