Mayor calls for peace on ‘Puso Massacre’ anniv

The municipal government of La Castellana in Negros Occidental led by Mayor Rhumyla Nicor-Manguilimutan and the families of the nine victims in “Puso Massacre” during the commemoration of the 7th year of the incident Thursday. (Photo courtesy of Brown Eagle)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – Mayor Rhumyla Nicor-Manguilimutan encouraged the people and families of the nine victims of “Puso Massacre” in La Castellana, Negros Occidental to cooperate with the government for peace and order.

The municipality commemorated on Thursday the 7th year of the massacre allegedly staged by rebels that claimed the lives of nine civilians and wounded 12 others at Barangay Puso in 2013.

The commemoration was held at the massacre site in the said village. It started with a holy mass followed by the wreath-laying by family and relatives of the victims and a short program with the mayor, and Lieutenant Colonel Egberto Dacoscos, commander of Army’s 62nd Infantry Batallion; police, and other local residents.

The families and relatives of the “Puso Massacre” victims are still in grief and agony seven years after losing their kin.

Since the incident happened, the municipal government provided several livelihood and scholarship programs to the bereaved families of the victims in order to alleviate their suffering.

Nicor-Manguilimutan said that amid the hurtful memories of the tragedy seven years ago, life doesn’t end there.

She said that nine children of the victims graduated through the support of the government. They are now working as a nurse, a police officer, and a teacher.

She said the incident was an eye opener to cooperate with the government’s efforts in sustaining peace and order, for development to follow.

Meanwhile, Colonel Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, lauded the support of the local government unit in honoring the victims of the massacre.

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) are with the families of victims in seeking justice against the Communist New People’s Army (NPA). We will continue our efforts to hunt down the armed group and stop them in their relentless killing of innocent civilians in our communities,” Pasaporte said.