Cafgu in banana plantations

THE Pilipino Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA) is set to facilitate its members who will employ the special Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) 2 in banana plantations in Mindanao.

According to PBGEA security committee chair Ralph dela Cruz, the communication development committee of their association, together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), is to deploy a special Cafgu 2 for the banana plantations of some of their members.

Dela Cruz said Cafgu 1 is intended for those paid through the government funds while Cafgu 2 are those employed by private sectors. In this case, the PBGEA.

Currently, the security committee of PBGEA and the point person of AFP are continuously working on the details. Dela Cruz added they plan on coming up with a proposal on which plantations will deploy the armed forces which would be for final approval of AFP.

The decision of deploying Cafgu 2 in banana plantations in Mindanao was followed by the attacks of lawless groups including the small packing house of Lapanday Foods Corporation (LFC), a PBGEA member, April of this year.

Citing the reports of AFP Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom), just last October 2, Sumifru Corporation’s banana plantation in T’boli, South Cotabato was attacked. “Various company facilities were torched and at least four service arms were confiscated by the NPA in a raid in Sumifru Corporation’s banana plantation in Sitio Lakag, Brgy. New Dumangas, T’boli, South Cotabato. The attack took place at around 10:30 in the evening in October 2, 2017,” read the Eastmincom report.

Less than a week after that, equipment and facilities of the Davao Ventures Corporation (DAVCO), a multinational company in Brgy. Merangeran, Quezon, Bukidnon was burned down by the Red Fighters of South Central Bukidnon – Subregional Command (SCB-SRC) of NPA.

In October 25, a container van hauling fruits for Dole-Stanfilco was burned by a group of NPA at Brgy. Banahao, Liangga, Surigao del Sur.

“If these kinds of attacks happen and it’s proven that it’s a terrorist attack, it will not be covered by insurance. The insurance will not pay,” said PBGEA executive director Stephen Antig in a separate interview.
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