Slain NPA rebel identified, another rebel injured in Himamaylan clash

Authorities turn over the remains of an alleged slain New People’s Army (NPA) rebel to his family on Thursday, a day after a clash erupted in Barangay Amontay, Binalbagan, Negros Occidental Wednesday. (Photo courtesy of 62nd IB)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – The Army’s 62nd Infantry Battalion (IB) identified yesterday an alleged member of the New People’s Army (NPA) killed in a clash at Sitio Caranawan, Barangay Amontay, Binalbagan, Negros Occidental last Wednesday.

The fatality was identified as Braulio Tobalado alias “Bruno,” an alleged member of Central Negros 1.

He was identified by his former comrades who are now peace advocates of the 62nd IB, according to the Army.

His remains were turned over to his family at Sabino Funeral Homes in Barangay Poblacion yesterday.

In a statement, Major General Marion Sison, commander of the 3rd Infantry Division (ID), extended his deepest sympathy to the bereaved family of Tobalado.

“We express our sorrow over the loss of another life in a pointless armed struggle,” Sison said.

“Many of your comrades have already perished. Their bodies were left unattended. We hope this tragic fate serves as a lesson for all that there is no promising life or hopeful future within the NPA,” Sison said.

Meanwhile, another alleged NPA rebel was wounded in a clash with 94th IB troopers in Barangay Buenavista, Himamaylan City yesterday.

Military troopers were conducting combat operations in response to the reported presence of the remnants of Sentro De Gabridad (SDG) Platoon, Central Negros 2, Komiteng Rehiyon-Negros, Cebu, Bohol, Siquijor (KR-NCBS) allegedly extorting money and food from the residents in the area when the encounter against four alleged NPA rebels broke out around 4:22 a.m.

The firefight lasted for eight minutes. Traces of bloodstains confirmed casualties on the enemy side, according to the Army.

Recovered from the encounter site were war materiel, including an M16 rifle, long and short magazines for M16, and personal belongings.

In a statement, Sison noted the vigilance of the locals in providing information that led to the immediate response of soldiers to thwart the alleged extortion activities of the NPAs.

Sison said that this encounter once again proves that when government forces and the people unite and work together, it becomes easier to suppress the actions of the NPA.

“Let us continue to collaborate to fully achieve our fervent desire for an NPA-free Himamaylan City and Negros Island,” he added.