MATI City Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat strongly condemns the ambush incident perpetrated by a lawless armed group to the military troops' vehicle past 8 a.m. Sunday, May 30, 2021.
In a statement released by the Mati City Information Office, the mayor said, “Today’s incident along the national highway in Sitio Tagawisan, Barangay Badas is unfortunate and we condemn such atrocious act by lawless armed group.”
She was also disappointed that the traffic flow was hampered since the national highway was temporarily closed for around two hours for the clearing operation of the crime scene.
The mayor added that if the same incident continues to happen it clearly will not bring development to the city and its people.
“Rest assured that the police and the military, with the support of the local government, are doing their best to prevent a similar incident from happening again,” Rabat said.
Based on the report of the 10th Infantry Division (10ID), the Alpha Company of the 66th Infantry Battalion (66IB) was on board a military truck bound for Banaybanay town from Barangay Taguibo when more or less 10 New People's Army Guerrilla Front 18 rebels ambushed them near Punta Tagawisan.
In a Philippine News Agency interview, Major Jerry Lamosao, spokesperson of 10ID, said the wounded soldier was hit at the back and taken to Davao Oriental Provincial Medical Center in Barangay Dahican.
“He is now in stable condition,” he said.
Lamosao said the 66IB immediately deployed more troops to hunt down the communist terrorist group.
Major General Ernesto Torres Jr., commander of the 10ID, downplayed the terror act as a show of force tactic to recruit new members and recover their losses brought about by peace and development gains.
“The few remaining terrorist rebels just wanted to project strength by conducting terrorist acts even with their already weak force to show that they are still a force to reckon with. They resort to this cowardly act to recruit new members and generate resources from their loss as their number continues to drop due to the convergence of the community, local government units, and the Army in Davao Oriental against insurgency,” he said in a statement.
He assured the public to remain calm as the situation is under control while urging everyone to be vigilant in reporting suspicious movements and activities of individuals to the army and the police.
“We appeal to the public to remain calm and vigilant. Daghang salamat ug amping kamong tanan,” Rabat said. (Jeepy P. Compio with PNA)